Louka Parry has taught at one of South Australia’s most remote communities and was promoted to Principal at the age of 27. Louka was named South Australian Inspirational Public Secondary Teacher of the Year, completed two masters degrees, studied at Harvard and has visited every continent. He also learned to speak four new languages, including Pitjantjatjara and Yankunytjnatjara, and plans to learn many more. He believes learning a language changes us, and the world around us, for the better.
Louka was inspired to study history, languages and identity, and moved to Europe when he finished high school. Returning to Australia to take up his first teaching job in one of the most remote communities in the Anangu Pitjantjatjara Yankunytjnatjara Lands.
He now speaks five languages, including Pitjantjatjara and Yankunytjnatjara, and isn’t stopping there, aiming to become a hyperpolyglot, speaking dozens of languages.
He believes that language is fundamental to identity, and without understanding ourselves we can’t hope to understand others. Learning another language, therefore, helps us develop our empathy and change our worldview.