The Boxties artistic director, Steph McCaw, is a music education pioneer whose outstanding work is recognized by musicians and music educators in Australia and overseas.
Research into Steph's methodology, conducted over two years by Professor Pamela Burnard of the Education Faculty of Cambridge University (UK) was published in two major international journals – Departures in Critical Qualitative Research, (University of California), and the Cambridge Journal of Education.
Professor Burnard also presented papers about Steph’s work at international conferences in Canada, Greece and the UK, and Steph herself has also given talks about her work at Cambridge University, the University of Queensland and on behalf of Teacher Training Australia.
In 2008, Steph received Rotary’s Paul Harris Fellowship, and was awarded a Churchill Fellowship, enabling her to visit community music programs in the UK, Finland and the USA.
She received a National Excellence in Teaching Award in 2010. In 2013 she received a State “Positive Teacher” award for her contribution to nurturing students’ mental wellbeing, and was designated a Queensland Government “Culture Champion”.
The desire to make music the “Steph way” has brought the Boxties together. The imaginative, charismatic and expressive way they play and teach is the best example of her methodology in practice.