Founder and Creative Director

Rachel Saliba

Creating connections between home and school to support children to thrive

Hi, I’m Rachel Saliba, founder and creative director of Practically Learning. I am an entrepreneur with a passion for facilitating learning and creating new ways to solve challenges. Practically Learning specialises in guiding schools and families to embrace a culture of family engagement in learning so that together, they can provide the support and encouragement children need to thrive in learning and in life.

Drawing on over 50 years of international academic research and over 25 years of my own experience in design thinking as a designer and marketer, I use creative and critical thinking, innovation and insight to identify strategic approaches to the unique and often complex challenges facing teachers and families as they navigate each child’s learning journey.

Over the past six years I’ve directly worked with over 20 primary and secondary schools as a facilitator, speaker, consultant and coach, guiding schools in family-school partnerships and culture development to shift mindsets in how people relate and engage in education. The workshops and programs I’ve developed provide the opportunity to move schools from the old model of involving parents at school to more deeper engagement and connection with their child and their learning through school.

I conduct seminars and workshops for parents, teachers and educational leaders on ways to strengthen connections with families, both at home and school and have facilitated workshops and conferences to include international guest speakers and researchers.

To increase broader awareness of the value of parent and family engagement in learning across Australia, I have spoken at various educational and engagement conferences around Australia including the Kidsmatter Conference, Broken Bay Parents Conference, Playgroup Victoria Conference, No More Harm Conference, the inaugural ARACY Parent Engagement Conference in 2017 and more recently was a guest presenter on the ARACY Lunchtime Learning webinar series.

I have designed and facilitated learning and coaching sessions for pre-service students and graduate teachers on the importance of relationships and parent engagement in education and its impact on student learning outcomes. In 2014 I travelled to New Mexico to gain a deeper understanding of the impact of parent engagement universally.

I have held several roles in education at a state and national level, as Executive Officer for the Catholic School Parents Victoria, and representative of Catholic School Parents Australia. I am currently involved in a nation-wide project along with ARACY and University of Southern QLD to develop a parent engagement toolkit for all sectors in primary and secondary education.

I have designed and facilitated Diploma and Advanced Diploma courses in Advertising, Marketing, Public Relations and Project Management at Victoria University as well as lectures on parent engagement at Australian Catholic University.

I am an author; self publishing my first book entitled Staying Connected – Guiding and supporting children on their learning journey. My first book explores the joys and challenges of the parent journey with children, how to remain in touch with their world and support them as they navigate through their education towards a promising future.

Click here to purchase your copy of the book.

IT and Leadership Director

Sam Saliba

Assisting people discover practical solutions Hi, I’m Sam Saliba, IT and Leadership Director of Practically Learning. I am committed to assisting people discover practical solutions to everyday challenges, whether they be technical or in finding solutions to leadership challenges. I bring over 25 years in training and technical expertise to my work, using strategic innovation, experience and insight to identify practical approaches to complex challenges in business. I’ve directly worked with hundreds of clients in the architectural and engineering industry, including delivering leadership and change management training for the leading CAD solutions company in Australia. In my spare time I am a leadership coach at a volunteer boys’ gymnastics club, training young men to become leaders and positive role models for future generations. I have a passion particularly for helping boys reach their full potential and in nurturing young minds to achieve more than they know they are capable of.