Former Commissioner for Children and Young People joins University to lead Peter Underwood Centre

Ms Leanne McLean has been appointed as the next Director of the Peter Underwood Centre for Educational Attainment at the University of Tasmania.

Ms McLean is currently Tasmania’s Commissioner for Children and Young People and has been instrumental in significant educational and social policy change in Tasmania.

She is a respected strategist, social policy influencer and advocate.

Ms McLean has served as Tasmania’s Commissioner for Children and Young People since 2018, and before that was successful in senior government advisory roles and as the Chief of Staff to the Tasmanian Minister for Education and Training.

She has been appointed to the Peter Underwood Centre after a competitive recruitment process.

“Setting our children and young people up for success in life through education is an urgent priority for Tasmania,” Ms McLean said.

“This work is absolutely fundamental to the future health and wellbeing of every young Tasmanian.”

Ms McLean grew up in the far south of Tasmania, attended Geeveston District High School, Ogilvie High School, Hobart College and the University of Tasmania.

She is passionate about providing a voice for children and young people, believes strongly in the transformative power of education and early intervention and the value of every young person in shaping the future of Tasmania.

The Vice-Chancellor, Professor Rufus Black, said he was delighted to welcome Ms McLean to this important role at the University.

“Leanne joins us at a critical time as we support Tasmania’s education system to meet the challenges of the future that have been set out in the Australian Universities Accord report.

“Leanne’s previous roles in the Tasmanian public sector are an excellent foundation for steering the Peter Underwood Centre as it enters its next phase of work to support the vital agenda of improving educational attainment in Tasmania.”

Ms McLean will take up her role in October 2024.

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