Female teacher smiling in classroom

The Women in School Leadership (WISL) is an onshore and offshore professional learning program for female principals in Victoria and India. The program is included in Victoria's India Strategy: Our Shared Future, to enhance people-to-people links between Victorian and Indian schools, in recognition of the importance of the Victoria-India relationship.

This professional learning program was successfully delivered as a pilot program in 2019/20 for a select cohort of participants.

The WISL program aims to:  

  • immerse participants in the host culture

  • engage inspiring women leaders in education, business and community to explore the theme and focus of WISL

  • identify opportunities for collaboration and exchange with participating principals and their school communities

  • create long-term partnerships between school leaders in Victoria and India through collaboration on issues of shared interest.

Program structure

The 6-month professional learning program structure includes:

  • face-to-face (in-country) and virtual workshops focused on educational leadership, cultural intelligence, system knowledge-building and action research
  • one mandatory face-to-face pre-departure session  
  • weekly self-directed learning  
  • peer-to-peer learning activities  
  • leadership coaching sessions  
  • development and showcase of a school improvement project.  

The in-country component of the program will include:

  • 10-day offshore program for 12 Victorian principals (to India), to engage in education-based and cultural activities, including shadowing at a host school
  • 10-day reciprocal visit for up to 12 Indian principals (to Melbourne, Australia), for a similar program involving education-based and cultural activities, including shadowing at a host school. 

The program was successfully delivered as a pilot program in 2019/20 for a select cohort of participants. It is fully subsided by the department for principals from Victorian government schools. 

The department is pleased to announce the following principals have been selected to participate in the 2023 WISL program:

  • Kim Mitchell, Aintree Primary School
  • Erin Norman, Mitcham Primary School
  • Tania Sorbello, Fitzroy North Primary School
  • Ann Turner-Calleri, Edgars Creek primary School
  • Giselle Allgood, Lake Bolac College P-12
  • Josie Millard, Kew High School
  • Jodie Bray, Clyde Creek Primary School
  • Lauren Harvey, Lyndhurst Secondary College
  • Donna Wright, Bandiana Primary
  • Sarah Tyyrell, Cowes Primary
  • Elizabeth Davey, Quarters Primary School
  • Sally Webb, Cranbourne Carlisle Primary School.

The schools represent the department's four major regions, including metropolitan and regional areas which will showcase the breadth of experience Victoria's educators have to share.

Victorian principals travel to India (October 2023)

This cohort will travel to India for 10 days in October. The first half of the in-country immersion will be based at Delhi and enable the 12 selected Victorian principals to learn and collaborate alongside Indian principals through a series of workshops focused on leadership, cultural intelligence, and comparative education policy. The cohort will then travel to West Delhi, Noida or Guguram for a multi-day in-school placement to observe best practice approaches to learning, wellbeing, and engagement.

The second half of the immersion will be delivered at Bengaluru where principals will attend the DIDAC Conference, Asia's largest exhibition in teaching and skills. Principals will actively participate in bespoke workshops aimed at strengthening bilateral dialogue on topics related to women in leadership and EdTech solutions for wellbeing. The conference will also provide unique networking and partnership opportunities for Victorian schools.

Indian principals travel to Victoria (May 2024)

A reciprocal visit for up to twelve Indian principals will occur in Term 2, 2024. The WISL program will culminate with a showcase of action-research projects focussed on one of the following themes:

  • Girl's Education for Empowerment
  • Engaging Community for Learning and Wellbeing
  • Learning Ecosystems for Diversity and Inclusion
  • Cultural Intelligence for Leading Self and Others. 

Applications for the 2023 WISL Program have now closed.

Please check back here in January 2024 for information and key dates relating to the 2024 program.

We encourage applicants to consider this professional learning opportunity in relation to their Annual Implementation Plan (AIP) and the Performance and Development Plan (PDP). 

If you have any questions regarding the WISL program, please email:

Last Update: 25/08/2023 12:28 PM