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P&C Journal Crossword

Reporting by Kos Psaltis,

P&C Northern Sydney Region’s Publicity Officer and P&C Federation Councillor.

 

Draft Report on NSW P&C Federation Council Meeting.

Saturday 15 – Sunday 16 September, 2007 at Granville.

Saturday 15 September, 2007

Notes by Kos Psaltis, P&C Northern Sydney Publicity Officer and P&C Federation Councillor

 

In the Saturday morning session, the external review into the operations of the NSW P&C Federation was presented by the reviewer Charles Dalgleish from Creighton Consultants. 

 

His key findings covered a range of improvements as follows:

  • Services and support provided by the Federation’s office.
  • Federation’s financial and accounting and system.
  • The size and function of the Council. His recommendations include a proposal to cut the size of Council from 106 to 30. More than 50% of his survey interviewees believed that Council was too large and there was a need for new blood.
  • More work needs to be done at the Regional level and the reviewer recommended that Federation investigate the setting up of sub-regions to help overcome the problem of distance.
  • The role of Councillors needs to be more clearly defined.
  • Recommendations were made as to improvements in governance procedures. Councillors need to better understand their responsibilities and the reviewer recommended an induction system be introduced.
  • Recommendations were made on improvements to the scope and value of resources and services provided to affiliates, members of Federation's Council and other Stakeholders.

The recommendations included the appointment of a General Manager having greater responsibilities that the present role; the appointment of a research/policy officer; update of the IT system and telephone system; and improvements to communications including the introduction of an E-Newsletter.

 

The President indicated to Council that steps have already been taken to implement some of the recommendations. The positions of General Manager and Policy or Research Officer are already being advertised through an agency.

 

In the second part of the morning session the various sub-committees of Council met. Active  sub-committees include Federation Structures; Annual Conference; Federal Issues; Social Context; Special Education; Publicity and Publications and Curriculum. There are a number of other groups working on specific issues.

 

During the afternoon session there was much debate and discussion as to Federation’s role within the Australian Council of State Schools Organisations and Council decided to insist on two voting delegates. A motion was also passed calling on a review of the functions and operations of ACSSO.

Sunday 16 September, 2007

Notes by Mary Anne Yedham

 

The morning Council session followed on from the review report which was delivered by Charles Dalgleish the previous day. Geoffrey de Lacy (Principal of Polaris Consulting) explained how the Council could commence the process that would develop a Strategic Plan. Mr. De Lacy is a highly experienced corporate governance and strategic planning specialist.

 

Council was divided into five groups to work on a strategic plan for P&C Federation NSW, covering three areas

1) Strategic Priorities,

2) Action Items,

3) Key Performance Indicators.

 

The five Groups were:-

a) Communication and Publicity

b) Government input, Policy Development and Research

c) Budgets and Expenditure Priorities

d) Governance structure and Succession

 e) Database, surveys and Stakeholder Analyses and Membership Services                         

 

Each group had six minutes after the group work period was over to present their plan to the full Council. Questions were asked and all the data from the five groups will be collated and circulated to the Council for review and comment within the next 1-2 weeks. The members of each group will do further work during the period before next Council meeting in November 2007.

 

In the afternoon session Geoffrey de Lacy facilitated a session with the aim being to begin the development of a vision statement of up to nine words that encapsulated the role of The NSW P&C Federation. The Council was split into different groups who nominated a spokesperson to announce the vision phase that would encapsulate the goal of Federation. Again, the words produced by each group will be collated by Geoffrey de Lacy and he will inform Councillors of the suggested vision statements within the next 30 days. A period of review and comment will follow.

 

Eventually, the information will be disbursed to Regional, District P&C and affiliate P&C associations for their input.

 

In the later part of the afternoon Council dealt with reports and the recommendations made by the Councillors who had attended various meetings since Annual Conference. The meeting carried most recommendations proposed by representative Councillors.

 

 

Draft Report on NSW P&C Federation Council Meeting.

28-29 April, 2007 at Granville.

 

During the Saturday sessions a number of motions were passed which included the following:

  • A Motion was passed regarding further class size reductions and this is to go to Annual Conference.
  • A rescission motion was put by our Regional President, David Hope, against the previous decision to hold a June 07 Council Meeting. The motion was lost (meaning that vthere will be five weekend Council meetings this year) but a subsequent motion moved by Jan Butland that the June Council meeting concentrate on Federal Issues (with an invited speaker from ACSSO) and some other specific issues was passed.
  • Three recommendations in respect to the forthcoming ACSSO Executive meeting were passed.
  • A recommendation that the Saturday Conference Dinner become a formal event encompassing Federation Awards presentations was passed. The consensus of opinion was that this initiative would free up Conference time during the day for other matters and also that the Saturday night dinner would then become more prestigious and meaningful.
  • The 2008 Conference was confirmed to take place in Albury with the Commercial Club selected as the most suitable venue.
  • A recommendation by David Hope that Federation set up a small team of 7 elected Councillors to plan for a new style Annual Conference starting from 2009 was passed .The group is to be known as the "Annual Conference Project Team " During the course of the weekend 7 Councillors were elected for those positions.
  • Recommendations that Federation convey to the major political parties that it supports the implementation of a program similar to the Investing in Our Schools initiative so long as at least 70% of such funding goes to public schools.

During the Sunday sessions  further Motions and Recommendations were put which included the following:

  • In future Council meetings, the Sunday starting time is to be 9.00am in lieu of 8.30am.
  • The Federal Issues sub-committee didn't recommend any motions at this point but did discuss issues such as performance pay, National Curriculum, vouchers, national testing and the Federal elections. The discussions were spirited but there was no unanimity of  a particular point of view.
  • The Social Context sub-committee recommendations included that we seek the views of bodies such as the Secondary and Primary Principal's Councils as to their view on the implementaion of School Chaplains in our schools, the issue of school bullying be revisited and a speaker to be invited for a future Council Meeting on teenage sexuality.
  • The Special Education sub-committee's recommendations included that the DET guarantee equality even for casual teachers, that the DET ensure that vacant positions be filled with teachers having sufficient training, and that the DET spokesperson for  the various behaviour centres be invited to address a  council meeting after Annual Conference.
  • The Curriculum sub-committee recommendations included that Federation write to ensure that DET continue to supply useful and meaningful data for the diagnostic use of children's learning and professional development of teachers.  A motion was passed and further motions regarding Aboriginal Education and the support of teacher professional learning and provision of resources were passed.
  • The Federal Structures sub-committee recommendations passed included that Life Members and Past Presidents be listed in the handbook.
  • The initiative for individual P&Cs to have their own email addresses was discussed as this was supposed to be in place in Term 1. Council was informed that it is now virtually ready to go.
  • A motion was passed that the Code of Conduct applicable to Councillors is to be extended to also bind Regional Councillors.
  • The P&C President is to be Council's representative on the Public Education foundation.
  • Federation is to inform the Board of Studies annually of the names and contact details of the Federation Representatives on the Board of Studies Committees.
  • That Federation refer the Draft Aboriginal Education Policy to the agenda for the Annual Conference 2007.
  • A motion was passed that Federation oppose the introduction of National Testing in years 3,5,7 & 9 and calls instead that the cost of such testing be allocated to the curriculum resources of public schools and for the professional development of public school teachers. A further motion was put and passed that in the event that such testing is introduced  that it not be so for at least 3 years. Another motion on this issue was put and passed to the effect that senior Federation Officers enquire of ACSSO as to what they are doing on this issue with the Federal Ministry.

The final session of Council was a workshop format where Councillors were divided into 4 Groups: Homework, Performance Pay, Strategic Plan Key Result Area 3 and Strategic Plan Key Result Area 4 . The Convenors of these 4 groups are to compile a report.

 

 

Report on NSW P&C Federation Council Meeting.

10-11 February, 2007 at Granville.

 

On the Saturday, there were 60 Councillors present. The motions considered and passed included the following:

  • That the Botanical Gardens Trust be reminded that private schools are a business.  (NB this was in the context of the use of the Domain precinct for sport by a particular private school)
  • That there be further investigation as to a venue for the 2007 Annual Conference.  (NB it was intended that this year's conference be held in Western Sydney and in the Penrith area but there have been difficulties encountered in finding suitable venues considering price and transport accessibility)
  • That the Senior Vice-President looks at the workings of our sub-committees of Federation and where we place them in the body of Council.
  • That accommodation be provided for the President on Council Meeting weekends and for Executive Meetings.
  • That the Federation purchase an item from Art Express/Operation Art. (the consensus of opinion was that this was a worthy way of supporting our students.  Part of the motion was that Federation continue to negotiate with the DET for the inclusion of Operation Art works as part of the P&C calendar.
  • That Council nominate 3 councillors as its representatives on the Board of Studies and that we pursue with the Minister Council's wish that our representatives be chosen by our democratic process.
  • That parents be represented on Regional SES Panels.  (NB these are merit selection panels and the motion insists that Regional Councils should be informed prior to the position being advertised and panels formed)
  • A comprehensive paper was delivered by Councillor Deborah Lloyd on behalf of the Class Size Reduction Advisory Committee and the recommendation was "That the Federation begin work on a campaign with Public Education partners to reduce the 'Need not exceed' class size from 30 in Years 3-6, similar to the introduction of the class size reduction in the early years initiative" (passed).

At the Federal Issues Sub-Committee Meeting the current Federal issues were identified to be:   a) The Voucher System; b) National Standards; c) National Curriculum ; d) Moves to control the teaching profession by way of incentive payments and giving principals the right to hire and fire staff.

 

I was not in attendance on the 2nd day of the Council meeting (Sunday) but fellow Councillor, Phyl Morris supplied me with the details.  Firstly, Sunday's attendance was a mere 46 which probably lends its support to an argument for reducing Council's workings to one day meetings. The motions considered and passed included the following:

 

  • That a working group be formed to delevop by March a comprehensive strategy to oppose vouchers. A comprehensive report by David Giblin was provided to Councillors regarding vouchers.
  • That both major political parties be asked to address Council and the President is to decide the time and venue.

   The next P&C Council Meeting has now been rescheduled for 28 & 29 April 2007.

 

 

Report on NSW P&C Federation Council Meeting.

25-26 November, 2006 at Granville.

 

By Kos Psaltis

Northern Sydney Region Publicity Officer and P&C Federation Councillor

 

At the commencement of the two day conference the President, Diane Giblin, advised delegates that the Senior Vice-President, Mark Wilson, had tendered his resignation. Mark has been Senior Vice-President since Annual Conference in July.

 

There was a ballot to fill the vacancy which was won by the incumbent Treasurer, Steve Carpenter. Our Regional President, David Hope, stood for the position and came second. He received 17 votes of the little over 50 cast. Another 30 odd positions were filled by election for various committees. Diane Butland (Board Of Studies) and David Hope (Facilities Standards Committee including Investing In Our Schools) from our Region were successful candidates for the positions they contested.

 

Damien Anderson (Sydney Region) is the newly elected Treasurer. Janice Frape takes over the role of P&C Journal Editor from David Hope, who did not recontest his position. Jan Butland informed the Council that his wife and fellow Councillor, Dianne, had just had an operation but was doing well.

 

During the Saturday session, the various sub-committees met. The current sub-committees include Federation Structures, Social Context, Curriculum, Special Education and Federal Issues. The various sub-committees delivered their reports during the course of the Council Meeting.

 

The Federal Issues sub-committee, chaired by a Councillor from our Region, Jan Butland, intends to set up a Yahoo Group to continue its dialogue between council meetings. This sub-committee discussed a range of topical issues including School Chaplains, obesity and how initiatives such as daily gymnastics/exercise in the school curriculum could help with some Federal funding.

 

The Social Context sub-committee put forward a motion for there to be a Fresh Taste Food stand at the forthcoming Annual Conference which was carried. The same sub-committee also put up a motion that the Federal Issues committee seek information on the Back to Work legislation and its impact on our school communities. This motion was carried.

 

The Annual Conference Sub-Committee made certain recommendations which were largely ratified by Council. The next Annual Conference will be held in Penrith and the theme will be " Public Education...a Choice Act. "

 

During the Saturday afternoon session, Councillors were divided into smaller groups with a designated leader for the purpose of strategic planning. The results of the various groups will be collated and documented in due course.

 

 A number of reports were presented during the Council Meeting, some of them with recommendations and others for information only. One councillor, Deborah Lloyd  presented a report of interest to all Councillors on the roles, duties and obligations of Councillors when acting as a P& C representative on an external committee.

 

The report by David Hope on the "Investing in our Schools" project suggested that an announcement on the successful projects was imminent (schools are now, in fact,  being informed of their result).

 

A much welcomed announcement was that every school P&C will have its own email address (via the DET’s IT system) and that should be up and running by Term 1 2007. A motion was also passed that the Chair in future will set the Agenda and that Council will then adhere to it. There is a strong expectation that this will reduce a some of the time wasted at Council due to the current practice of debating the merits or otherwise of changing the Agenda.

 

During General Business a motion was put and passed opposing the Federal Government's school chaplain initiative. Council Meetings also present schools, District and Regional Councils the opportunity to put forward a motion which may be of a particular concern to that affiliate. In this way The Hunter School of Performing Arts, put forward a motion concerning a dance studio which the Department deemed surplus in view of the fact that the school has recently got a new theatre. Council supported that particular school in their fight with the Department. Schools in our Region should always be mindful of this opportunity.

 

Kathy Greer from our Region alerted Council to a particular school land sale which ended up in the hands of a group setting up a private school. A Motion was put and passed aimed at preventing this sort of thing reoccurring.

 

The Web Editor gave a presentation of the system, which has been in place for almost two years, which allows Councillors to submit reports, diary entries etc via the web.

 

Scroll down for earlier reports.

 

Future Meeting Dates

 

Council

29-30 March,  2008

 

Council

14-15 June, 2008

 

Annual Conference

25-26-27 July, 2008

Albury

 

 

Other Dates

 

P&C Day

Wed 5 March, 2008

 

2008 Education Expo

14-15 June

 

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