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Marjory Ellsmore

Languages Pedagogy at University of Sydney

Community Languages Teaching Program

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My Story

Marjory Ellsmore has made an outstanding contribution to the teaching/learning of languages in NSW through her work in schools and at the university level and through her work on numerous educational committees and boards. Her advisory work with teachers at conferences, running workshops and presenting, has significantly affected teaching at the classroom level. Marjory has also been heavily involved in both syllabus and curriculum development and HSC French examination setting and marking.


Marjory has been a strong advocate for Languages Education throughout her professional career and was honoured by the FIPLV in 2005 for her outstanding service to Languages Education in Australia. She has also been awarded scholarships and /or grants by the French, Korean and Canadian governments.


Marjory began her teaching career in 1972 and has taught French, German, Latin, Japanese and Italian in city and country schools. Since her “retirement” in 2008, she has been teaching at the university level (starting in 2014) in the Community Languages Schools Program at the University of Sydney and has done consultancy work for Aboriginal Languages (2009-2012) and Project Work for Asian Heritage Languages (2009-2010) for the Board of Studies. She is currently involved in a languages research program at the University of Sydney.


A brief summary of Marjory’s career as well as the ongoing involvement described above shows her extensive contribution to languages teaching/learning:

• 1972-1993 Teaching in various schools;

• 1979-2004 Member and Deputy Chair of BOS French Syllabus Committee; French HSC Exam Committee Member and Chairperson; French HSC Senior Marker and Supervisor of Marking;

• 1993-1996 French Language Adviser, Curriculum Directorate;

• 1996-2001 Senior Curriculum Adviser, Saturday School of Community Languages (SSCL);

• 2001-2008 Principal, SSCL.


Marjory has been an active member of the MLTA since her Dip ED. year in 1971 and has over the

last 46 years spoken and presented at MLTA conferences, participated at meetings, run

workshops, been a member of MLTA sub-committees and working teams and encouraged and

supported staff to become MLTA members. In the early 2000s when the MLTA was struggling to remain viable Marjory acted as “nominal secretary” to help re-establish the association.


After the completion of the research into the professional needs of community languages teachers, and the establishment of the Sydney Institute for Community Languages Education (SICLE) in 2017, Marjory continued to teach the professional development courses offered through SICLE. Most recently she has worked with the NSW Department of Education for the Community Languages Schools Minister’s Awards program.

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