2016 national winner, Luke Macaronas,
St Kevin’s CollegeImportant Dates

Important Dates

The dates for 2020 are yet to be announced:

Regional Finals


State Final


National final
Monday 12 August 2019

The closing dates for the Regional finals will be announced.


The award aims to encourage and maintain the best use of clear and effective spoken English.  The competition is generously sponsored by The Australian-Britain Society Foundation, BBM Youth Support and The English Speaking Union.

At the National level the award consists of:
• a prepared speech of eight minutes on a subject of the contestant’s choice
• an interview
• an impromptu speech of three minutes on a subject chosen by the organisers.  Each student speaks on the same subject after a four minute preparation time.


The Plain English Speaking Award was first organised in Victoria in 1977.  Since 1978 it has operated on a national level.  The award is open to senior students in all government and non-government schools throughout Australia.
The Australian winner competes in an international final conducted in England by the English Speaking Union.  The international finals held in 1982 and 1983 were won by our representatives Peter Hatcher and Warren Lee respectively.  In 2013 the Australian representative Isabel Crawford, became our first international winner in 30 years and our first female winner and in 2016 Luke Macaronas was successful.
Members of The Australia-Britain Society with 2016 award winner Luke Macaronas

Members of The Australia-Britain Society with 2016 award winner Luke Macaronas


The state and territory finalists and coordinators stay in hotels courtesy of The Australia-Britain Society Foundation.  The winning student receives $5,000 from BBM Youth Support to enable them to compete at the International Final in May, 2017.


Australia-Britain Society Foundation, English Speaking Union, BBM Youth Support, New South Wales Department of Education and Principals and teachers of participating schools.  In Victoria, PESA is organised and conducted by the Victorian Curriculum and Assessment Authority. The Australia-Britain Society Branches also generously sponsor the Award.