John Paul College Principal Announcement

On behalf of the John Paul College Board, I am delighted to advise that Mrs Karen Spiller has been appointed as the next Head of John Paul College, commencing in term one, 2018. Mrs Spiller is an experienced Principal having taught and led in Anglican co-educational and girls’ schools for over thirty years.

Her experience is broad across all aspects of primary and secondary education and includes extensive experience in not for profit boards at the national and state level. She is currently the Principal of St Aidan’s Anglican Girls’ School at Corinda, a position she has held since 2000. During this time, she has guided the school through a period of academic strengthening, cultural change and significant capital works. Under her leadership, St Aidan’s has been recognized as one of Queensland’s top performing schools.

Mrs Spiller’s respect in the educational community, Australia wide and locally, has seen her recognised with a number of peer nominated awards and fellowships including: the John Laing Professional Award (Qld), AITSL (Australian Institute for Teaching and School Leadership) Award for Excellence in Teaching and School Leadership and a National Award for Excellence in School Music Education.

She is currently the National President of the Association of Heads of Independent Schools of Australia, the Vice President of Independent Schools Queensland, a member of the Yalari Board and she also sits on the Queensland Government’s International Education and Training Advisory Group.  Prior to her time as Principal, she was Deputy Principal at St Aidan’s, Head of Department at the co-educational Hillbrook Anglican School and a teacher at St. Margaret’s Anglican Girls’ School.

Mrs Spiller was awarded a Churchill Fellowship in 2011 to examine leadership development practices and has been recognized nationally for her work in encouraging women leaders, in particular. She is well known for her relentless focus on whole school improvement and care for each student.

Her qualifications include an MBA, a Masters of Educational Administration, as well as a Bachelor of Arts and a Bachelor of Educational Studies. She is a Fellow of the Institute of Company Directors, Australian College of Educators, Australian Human Resources Institute and the Australian Council of Educational Leaders. She is deeply committed to her own professional learning and has completed courses in both the Education and Business Schools at Harvard University. She has been a regular presenter at national and international conferences, and was appointed as a Fellow of Bond University in 2013 and is currently on the QUT Business Faculty CEO Advisory Panel.

Mrs Spiller has three adult children, two sons and a daughter, and is looking forward to the move to John Paul College. She will endeavour to attend some of our College’s events through the remainder of the year and is particularly keen to use these opportunities to get to know the students, staff and parents of the College. We are confident that the warmth of Mrs Spiller’s personality and her commitment to the welfare of each student will see her making a significant contribution to our College and our students.

John Paul College has undertaken an extensive and rigorous recruitment process. The Board was very pleased with the number of high calibre educators who applied for the position. Throughout the process, the Board was continually impressed with Mrs Spiller’s palpable passion for educating children and to lead our College.  Her wealth of professional experience and leadership acumen is outstanding.

Together with the Board, I warmly look forward to welcoming Mrs Karen Spiller to the John Paul College family. We also congratulate her on recognition this week in the Queen’s Birthday Honours list, being awarded the Medal (OAM) of the Order of Australia for services to education, and mentoring and coaching others. She is an outstanding advocate for leadership development of her staff and students.


Helen Weissenberger
Chair of the Board of Directors
John Paul College Ltd


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