2019 will be our biggest year yet - a message from the Chairman on 2019 Initiatives

Dear Australian Interschools Community Members,

As the end of the school year approaches, we are in strong preparation for 2019 and a year of new and exciting developments at many levels of Snowsports. School Snowsports Coordinators and School Principals should note some important calendar dates in this E-News.  

Ski & Snowboard Australia / NSW Snowsports / Snowsports ACT Unification

On Monday 3rd December, the combined Boards of SSA and NSW/ACT (now known as the SSA Northern Management Committee – NMC) collectively met for the first time, in Canberra. This was an historic moment, with the ASC CEO Kate Palmer also in attendance as we recognised this important moment in Australian Snowsports History, becoming the first Olympic Sport in Australia to unify into a single organisation to govern the whole sport from the grassroots to the elite. This is an exciting development and time for our sport, and over the coming 6-8 month period, we will look to keep the wider Snowsports community informed of new developments and opportunities that will flow from this new direction. 

Interschools & Participation Development

The SSA/NSW/ACT Unification will initially have a small effect at Interschools management level. Our NSW-ACT-QLD Interschools Committee will now be known as the SSA Northern Interschools Committee. Our National Interschools Committee (NIC) will be maintained in its current structure, and includes Victorian & South Australian representation. The NIC reports to the SSA National Participation Committee (NPC), and includes Interschools, Resort, Sport and Business representatives. At NSW-ACT level, Wendy Olsen moves into an expanded role as the SSA Northern Operations Manager and is located in Canberra, Bec Clark moves into a larger National role as the SSA Pathways Development Manager and is located in Sydney, whilst Cathy Lambert is the SSA Northern Administration Manager and is located in our new SSA Jindabyne office.

SSA and National Interschools has opened a NSW-based office at the Jindabyne Sport & Recreation Centre, and we have leased significant operational space with exciting development proposals to be announced early in 2019. We are currently in significant discussions with the NSW Office of Sport and NSW Sport & Rec on both infrastructure and program development in Snowsports, that will greatly improve our capacity “To support Snowsports athletes and develop Champions.” 

Some Important and new 2019 Calendar Dates for School Snowsports Coordinators & Principals

2019 will be our most significant year of wide-spread consultation with the Australian Interschools Community in many decades, as we seek to re-fine and align all aspects of our highly successful and inspiring events program to ensure that it better identifies potential champions of the future, and links strongly to our SSA Pathways and Athlete Development programs, across all disciplines. Our School Snowsports Coordinators are recognised as the key-partner target group, if we are to achieve even greater success with our sports growth and development at State, National, and International level. Our focus moving forward will centre on three main themes of sustainability – safety – success.  

Focus-Group Interschools School Coordinator Conversations: These were a great success in 2018 in NSW/QLD, and will expand in 2019, as we head toward our end-of-season NPC Conference. These small-group discussions will enable a focussed and targeted approach to initiating change and direction. We are also considering creating three small ‘think-tanks’ in 2019, consisting of (invited/selected) Large / Medium / Small-School school coordinators, to test and discuss concepts. These meetings will be held in Sydney, Canberra and Melbourne, with the initial dates being March 13 + 14, and May 3 (Melbourne) / May 6 + 7, and June 3 (Sydney) / May 28 + 29 (Canberra). These meetings will also continue during our 2019 events period. More details will be forwarded to schools in 2019.  

SSA National Participation Conference - Canberra - Thursday 7th + Friday 8th November: This will be a major initiative in 2019. Throughout 2018, a small working group has developed the Conference program and objectives. The National Participation Conference will see over 100 School Coordinators – SSA Representatives – Resorts – Clubs - Officials come together in Canberra for a 2-day Conference focussed on Snowsports Participation & Development priorities, Interschools Snowsports Workshops, National Sports & Education directions, and Snowsports Pathway Developments. This conference will be held at QT-Canberra, located in the inner city at New Acton. The preferred location of Canberra, as the Nation’s capital, rather than a State capital, is a symbolic message to our National Snowsports Community. The conference will be a mix of key-notes from Sports & Education Leaders, small-group presentations from Sports Experts, small-group discussions on specific Interschools & Participation directions, and panel-style Q & A sessions. Registration details will be forwarded to School Coordinators & Principals toward the end of Term 1, 2019 (early April).

SSA Australian Snowsports Community Awards Evening – Canberra - Friday 8th November: As part of the 2018 Snowsports Unification process, SSA and SSA Northern have agreed to develop a new and exciting “SSA Australian Snowsports Community Awards” Event. This evening awards event will be held in the QT-Canberra Ballroom on Friday 8th November, and follow the NPC Conference.  This additional SSA Awards evening will develop into an annual and very significant Awards and Celebration evening that enables us to promote and acknowledge SSA Programs and Activities at Community – Participation – Development – Pathways levels, and will include the Resorts, the Clubs, the Schools, the Volunteers, the Parents, the Athletes, the Coaches, and others. An SSA working group will manage the development of this major initiative, with the wider Snowsports community to be consulted on the areas of the sport that should be recognised. 

SSA Awards Evening – Melbourne - Wednesday 1st May: The SSA 2019 Snowsports Awards will be held in Melbourne at 7pm on Wednesday 1st May. Further details will be forwarded in early 2019. These annual awards will move toward a more Athlete, Sport and Industry focus at high performance level in future years. Details on applications for the SSA Snowsports School of the Year, and the SSA Outstanding Achievement of the Year for Small Schools, will be forwarded to all schools at the beginning of the 2019 school year, with applications due toward the end of March. 

Seasons Greetings and our thanks to all of our Interschools Snowsports Community for your endeavours and achievements throughout 2018. We look forward to welcoming you back in 2019.  



Steve Cooper

Chair, Ski & Snowboard Australia National Participation Committee - NPC

Chair, Ski & Snowboard Australia National Interchools Committee - NIC


6th December, 2018.