Funding Opportunities - 21 Nov 2017

Nov 22 2017
1.     Local Sport Defibril...

Victorian CaSPA Principals recognised for their service

Nov 21 2017
At the recent meeting of AGM of the PAVCSS on N...

South Australia Farewells some of its long serving Principals

Nov 20 2017
At the recent meeting of APCSS in Adelaide, ...

CaSPA Submission to Gonski 2.0 Panel on Educating for Excellence

Nov 19 2017

CCI Supports Principal Health and Well Being

Nov 18 2017
Above: Hugh Easton form CCI discuss well bei...

Daniel Delmage wins 2017 CaSPA Equity Scholarship

Nov 17 2017
At the recent CaSPA Board meeting, the Director...

Phil Lewis farewelled as President of CaSPA

Nov 16 2017
Phil Lewis finished his term on the Board of...

Francis Sullivan meets with CaSPA Board

Nov 15 2017
Francis Sullivan CEO of the Truth, Justice a...

Government Policy leads to School Fee Increases

Nov 14 2017
Catholic schools along the nation's east...

Gonski 2.0 gives 'dumbed down' curriculums a D-minus

Nov 13 2017
Australian students have suffered as a result o...

Pure discrimination from SA government on school funding

Nov 12 2017
Bishop of Port Pirie and NCEC Commissioner, Gre...

Catholic Sector anticipates better outcomes from Review of SES

Nov 11 2017
The Catholic sector hopes the National School R...

Profiles: Sr Marg Ghosn [NSW]; Sue Lennox [NSW]: Matt Byrne [Vic]

Nov 10 2017
We thank the following colleagues for sharing t...

Funding Opportunities - 9 Nov 2017

Nov 09 2017
1.     Student Mentoring Pr...

Self Awareness - The key to success in the classroom AND as a school leader

Nov 08 2017
Those who have worked in the field of Profes...

CaSPA News


Funding available for your school to visit Parliament House in Canberra

Posted on 14 October 2017
Funding available for your school to visit Parliament House in Canberra
We know a visit to Parliament House is a potent learning experience, but many schools are unable to bring their students to Canberra. Cost, in particular, can be a big issue. Luckily, there's an Australian government scheme that can help.

The Parliament and Civics Education Rebate (PACER) offers financial assistance for students in Years 4 to 12 across Australia to travel to Canberra to study civics and citizenship. The rebate is available to schools located more than 150km away from Canberra.

What are you waiting for? Check the eligibility guidelines and start planning your trip today.
Posted in: Government Funding   0 Comments

Civility costs nothing - Ignoring it in the workplace can pay a hefty price

Posted on 13 October 2017
Civility costs nothing - Ignoring it in the workplace can pay a hefty price

Nasty people don't just make others feel miserable; they create economic problems for their companies.

Lars Dalgaard is CEO and cofounder of SuccessFactors, one of the world's fastest-growing software companiesand the fastest with revenues over $30 million. Dalgaard recently listed some milestones that his California-based company passed in its first seven years:

  • the use of its software by more than two million employees at over 1,200 companies around the world
  • the use of its software by employees speaking 18 languages in 156 countries
  • growth three times that of the company's nearest competitor
  • enthusiastic recommendations of the product by nearly all customers
  • dramatically low employee turnover
  • employing no jerks
That's rightno jerksalthough the word SuccessFactors really uses (except on its Web site) is a mild obscenity that starts with the letter A and sort of rhymes with "castle." All the employees SuccessFactors hires agree in writing to 14 "rules of engagement." Rule 14 starts out, "I will be a good person to work withnot territorial, not be a jerk." One of Dalgaard's founding principles is that "our organization will consist only of people who absolutely love what we do, with a white-hot passion. We will have utmost respect for the individual in a collaborative, egalitarian, and meritocratic environmentno blind copying, no politics, no parochialism, no silos, no gamesjust being good!"

Dalgaard is emphatic about applying this rule at SuccessFactors because part of its mission is to help companies focus more on performance and less on politics. Employees aren't expected to be perfect, but when they lose their cool or belittle colleagues, inadvertently or not, they are expected to repent. Dalgaard himself is not above the rulehe explained to me that, given the pressures of running a rapidly growing business, he too occasionally "blows it" at meetings. At times, he has apologized to all 400-plus people in his company, not just to the people at the meeting in question, because "word about my behavior would get out."

As Dalgaard suggests, there is a business case against tolerating nasty and demeaning people. Companies that put up with jerks not only can have more difficulty recruiting and retaining the best and brightest talent but are also prone to higher client churn, damaged reputations, and diminished investor confidence. Innovation and creativity may suffer, and cooperation could be impaired, both within and outside the organizationno small matter in an increasingly networked world.

The problem is more widespread than you might think. Research in the United Kingdom and the United States suggests that jerk-infested workplaces are common: a 2000 study by Loraleigh Keashly and Karen Jagatic1 found that 27 percent of the workers in a representative sample of 700 Michigan residents experienced mistreatment by someone in the workplace. Some occupations, such as medical ones, are especially bad. A 2003 study2 of 461 nurses found that in the month before it was conducted, 91 percent had experienced verbal abuse, defined as mistreatment that left them feeling attacked, devalued, or humiliated. Physicians were the most frequent abusers.

There is good news and bad news about workplace jerks. The bad news is that abuse is widespread and the human and financial toll is high. The good news is that leaders can take steps to build workplaces where demeaning behavior isn't tolerated and nasty people are shown the door.

How workplace jerks do their dirty work

Researchers who write about psychological abuse in the workplace define it as "the sustained display of hostile verbal and nonverbal behavior, excluding physical contact." At least for me, that definition doesn't quite capture the emotional wallop these creeps pack. The workplace jerk definition I use is this: do people feel oppressed, humiliated, de-energized, or belittled after talking to an alleged jerk? In particular, do they feel worse about themselves?

Workplace jerks do their dirty work in all sorts of ways; I've listed 12 common onesthe dirty dozento illustrate the range of these subtle and not-so-subtle moves, which can include physical contact (Exhibit 1). Researchers who study workplace abuse and bullying have identified scores of others. I suspect you can add many more that you've seen, personally experiencedor committed.

Exhibit 1

The dirty dozen
Lists like these are useful but leave a sterilized view of how workplace jerks act and the damage they inflict. Stories, often painful ones, are necessary to understand how workplace bullies demean and de-energize people. Consider the story of this victim of multiple humiliations:

"Billy," he said, standing in the doorway so that everyone in the central area could see and hear us clearly. "Billy, this is not adequate, really not at all." As he spoke he crumpled the papers that he held. My work. One by one he crumpled the papers, holding them out as if they were something dirty and dropping them inside my office as everyone watched. Then he said loudly, "Garbage in, garbage out." I started to speak, but he cut me off. "You give me the garbage, now you clean it up." I did. Through the doorway I could see people looking away because they were embarrassed for me. They didn't want to see what was in front of them: a 36-year-old man in a three-piece suit stooping before his boss to pick up crumpled pieces of paper.3

The damage done

The human damage done by that kind of encounter is well documentedespecially the harm that superiors do to their subordinates. Bennett Tepper studied abusive supervision in a representative study of 712 employees in a midwestern city.4 He asked them if their bosses had engaged in abusive behavior, including ridicule, put-downs, and the silent treatmentdemeaning acts that drive people out of organizations and sap the effectiveness of those who remain. A six-month follow-up found that employees with abusive supervisors quit their jobs at accelerated rates. Those still trapped felt less committed to their employers and experienced less satisfaction from work and life, as well as heightened anxiety, depression, and burnout. Dozens of other studies have uncovered similar findings; the victims report reduced levels of job satisfaction, productivity, concentration, and mental and physical health.

Nasty interactions have a far bigger impact on the mood of people who experience them than positive interactions do. Recent research shows just how much. Theresa Glomb, Charles Hulin, and Andrew Miner did a clever study5 in which 41 employees of a manufacturing plant in the Midwest carried palm-size computers for two to three weeks. At four random intervals throughout the workday, each employee had to report any recent interaction with a supervisor or a coworker and whether it was positive or negative, as well as their current mood. The researchers found that negative interactions affected the moods of these employees five times more strongly than positive ones.

All these factors suggest an effect on costs. One reader of a short article I wrote on workplace jerks6 felt that more companies would be convinced if they estimated "the total cost of jerks," or TCJ (Exhibit 2). If you want to develop a rough estimate of your company's TCJ, take a look at my list of possible costs and attach your best monetary estimate to each, as well as to any other factors you regard as relevant. This exercise can help you face up to the damage that jerks do to your organization. When I told a Silicon Valley executive about the TCJ method, he replied that it was more than a concept at his company. Management had calculated the extra costs generated by a star salespersonthe assistants he burned through, the overtime costs, the legal costs, his anger-management training, and so on and found that the extra cost of this one jerk for one year was $160,000.

Exhibit 2

Finally, if word leaks out that your organization is led by mean-spirited jerks, the damage to its reputation can drive away potential employees and shake investor confidence. Neal Patterson, the CEO of Cerner, learned this lesson in 2001 when he sent an e-mail intended for just the top 400 people in this health care software company. Patterson complained that few employees were working full 40-hour weeks and that "as managersyou either do not know what your employees are doing; or you do not care." Patterson said that he wanted to see the employee parking lot "substantially full" from 7:30 AM to 6:30 PM weekdays and "half full" on Saturdays. If that didn't happen, he would take harsh measures. "You have two weeks," he warned. "Tick, tock."7 Patterson's e-mail was leaked on the Internet, provoking harsh criticism from management experts, including my Stanford colleague Jeffrey Pfeffer, who described it as "the corporate equivalent of whips and ropes and chains." Pfeffer went a bit overboard for my taste. But investors weren't pleased either: the company's stock value plummeted by 22 percent in three days. Patterson handled the aftermath well: he sent an apology to his employees and admitted that he wished he had never sent the e-mail. The share price did bounce back. Patterson learned the hard way that when CEOs come across as bullies, they can scare their investors as well as their underlings.

Enforcing the no-jerks rule

Executives who are committed to building a civilized workplace don't just take haphazard action against one jerk at a time; they use a set of integrated work practices to battle the problem.

At the workplaces that enforce the no-jerks rule most vehemently and effectively, an employee's performance and treatment of others aren't seen as separate things. Phrases like "talented jerk," "brilliant bastard," or "a bully and a superstar" are oxymorons. Jerks are dealt with immediately: they quickly realize (or are told) that they have blown it, apologize, reflect on their nastiness, ask for forgiveness, and work to change their ways. Repeat offenders aren't ignored or forgiven again and againthey change or depart.

Five intertwined practices are useful for enforcing the no-jerks rule.

Make the rule public by what you say and, especially, do

Plante & Moran, a company on Fortune's "100 Best Places to Work" list for nine years in a row, proclaims its rule openly: "The goal is a 'jerk-free' workforce at this accounting firm," and "the staff is encouraged to live by the Golden Rule." At Barclays Capital, COO Rich Ricci says that "we have a no-jerk rule around here," especially in selecting senior executives. BusinessWeek explains what this means for the employees of Barclays Capital: "Hotshots who alienate colleagues are told to change or leave."8

Talking about the rules is just the first step; the real test happens when someone acts like a jerk. If people don't feel comfortable blowing the whistle on the offender, your company will both be seen as hypocritical and fill up with jerks, so don't adopt the rule unless you mean it. SuccessFactors shows how to back talk with action. Consider this post on the company's public blog site by company employee Max Goldman:

My own personal experience with [the no-jerks rule] is very simple. Once, my boss was being a jerk. I told him so. Instead of getting mad, he accepted the comment and we moved on. Later, he thanked me for telling him. My boss thanked me for calling him a jerk. Let me repeat that. My boss thanked me for calling him a jerk. Calling the behavior what it was helped everyone work better together and get more done. Can you do that at your company?

Weave the rule into employment policies and practices

Consider how the Seattle law firm Perkins Coie, which earned a spot on Fortune's "100 Best Places to Work" list in 2007 for the fourth year in a row, applies the rule during job interviews. Partners Bob Giles and Mike Reynvaan were once tempted to hire a rainmaker from another firm but realized that doing so would violate the rule. As they put it, "We looked at each other and said, 'What a jerk.' Only we didn't use that word."9

Similarly, Southwest Airlines has always emphasized that people are "hired and fired for attitude." Herb Kelleher, the company's cofounder and former CEO, shows how this works: "One of our pilot applicants was very nasty to one of our receptionists, and we immediately rejected him. You can't treat people that way and be the kind of leader we want."10 As Ann Rhoades, a former Southwest vice president, told me, "We don't do it to our people; they don't deserve it. People who work for us don't have to take the abuse."

Teach people how to fight

The no-jerks rule doesn't mean turning your organization into a paradise for conflict-averse wimps. People in the best groups and organizations know how to fight. Intel, the world's largest semiconductor maker, gives all full-time employees training in the "constructive confrontation" that is a hallmark of the company's culture. Leaders and corporate trainers emphasize that bad things happen when the bullies win using personal attacks, disrespect, and intimidation. When that happens, only the loudest and strongest voices get heard; there is no diversity of views; communication is poor, tension high, and productivity low; and people first resign themselves to living with the nastinessand then resign from the company.

To paraphrase a primary theme in Karl Weick's classic book, The Social Psychology of Organizing,11 this approach means learning to "argue as if you are right and to listen as if you are wrong." That is what Intel tries to teach through lectures, role-playing, and, most essentially, through observing the way managers and leaders fightand when. The company's motto is "disagree and then commit," because second-guessing, complaining, and arguing after a decision is made sap effort and attention and thus make it unclear whether the decision went wrong because it was a bad idea or because it was a good idea implemented with insufficient energy and commitment.

Apply the rule to customers and clients too

Organizations that are serious about enforcing the no-jerks rule apply it not just to employees but also to customers, clients, students, and everyone else who might be encountered at work. They do so because their people don't deserve the abuse, customers (or taxpayers) don't pay to endure or witness demeaning jerks, and persistent nastiness that is left unchecked can create a culture of contempt infecting everyone it touches.

The late Joe Goldthe founder of Gold's Gym, which now has more than 550 locations in 43 countriesapplied a variation of the no-jerks rule to customers. He didn't mince words: "To keep it simple you run your gym like you run your house. Keep it clean and in good running order. No jerks allowed, members pay on time, and if they give you any crap, throw them out." Gold applied the rule to customers from the time he opened his first gym, a block from Muscle Beach, in Venice, California, where early customers included Arnold Schwarzenegger.

Manage the little moments

Putting the right practices and policies in place is useless if they don't set the stage for civilized conversations and interactions. People must treat the person in front of them, right now, in the right way, and they must feel safe to point out when their peers and superiors blow it. The power of efforts to work on "the little moments" can be seen in an organizational change at the US Department of Veterans Affairs. To reduce the bullying of employees, psychological abuse, and aggression at 11 sites with more than 7,000 people, each site appointed an action team of managers and union members that developed a customized intervention process. But there were key similarities among all of the sites: employees learned about the damage that aggression causes, used role-playing exercises to get into the shoes of bullies and victims, and learned to reflect before and after they interacted with other people. Action team members and site leaders also made a public commitment to model civilized behavior themselves. At one site, for example, managers and employees worked to eliminate seemingly small slights such as glaring, interruptions, and treating people as if they were invisiblesmall things that had escalated into big problems.

The results included less overtime (saving taxpayers' money) and sick leave, fewer complaints from employees, and shorter waiting times for the veterans who were the patients at the 11 sites. A comparison of surveys undertaken before and after these interventions, which started in mid-2001, found a substantial decrease, across the 11 sites, in 32 of 60 kinds of bullyingthings like glaring, swearing, the silent treatment, obscene gestures, yelling and shouting, physical threats and assaults, vicious gossip, and sexist and racist remarks.

Being a jerk is contagious

The most important single principle for building a workplace free of jerks, or to avoid acting like one yourself, is to view being a jerk as a kind of contagious disease. Once disdain, anger, and contempt are ignited, they spread like wildfire. Researcher Elaine Hatfield calls this tendency "emotional contagion":12 if you display contempt, others (even spectators) will respond in much the same way, creating a vicious circle that can turn everyone in the vicinity into a mean-spirited monster just like you. Experiments by Leigh Thompson and Cameron Anderson, as they told the New York Times,13 show that when even compassionate people join a group with a leader who is "high energy, aggressive, mean, the classic bully type," they are "temporarily transformed into carbon copies of the alpha dogs." Being around people who look angry makes you feel angry too. Hatfield and her colleagues sum up this emotional-contagion research with an Arabic proverb: "A wise man associating with the vicious becomes an idiot."

A swarm of jerks creates a civility vacuum, sucking the warmth and kindness out of everyone who enters and replacing them with coldness and contempt. As we have seen, organizations can screen out and reform these contagious jerks and, if those efforts fail, expel them before the infection spreads. But treating nastiness as a contagious disease also suggests some useful self-management techniques.

Consider some wise advice that I heard from the late Bill Lazier, a successful executive who spent the last 20 years of his career teaching business and entrepreneurship at Stanford. Bill gave this advice to our students: when you get a job offer or an invitation to join a team, take a close look at the people you will work with, successful or not. If your potential colleagues are self-centered, nasty, narrow minded, or unethical, he warned, you have little chance of turning them into better human beings or of transforming the workplace into a healthy one, even in a tiny company. In fact, the odds are that you will turn into a jerk as well.

About the author(s)

Robert Sutton, professor of management science and engineering at Stanford University, is cofounder of its Hasso Plattner Institute of Design. This article is adapted from his book The No Asshole Rule: Building a Civilized Workplace and Surviving One That Isn't, New York: Warner Business Books, 2007.

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Our best on a par with Singapore's struggling students

Posted on 12 October 2017
Our best on a par with Singapore's struggling students

"We are condemning our children to a second-class future."

The maths, reading and science skills of average Australian students are barely on par with Singapore's most disadvantaged teenagers and risk undermining Australia's economic prosperity, warns the man responsible for the gold standard in international tests.

Andreas Schleicher, the coordinator of the respected Program for International Student Assessment (PISA), arrives in Australia today and is sounding an alarm for the nation to halt its academic free fall.

Importantly, he says "the most significant drop in Australia's PISA scores occurred among its top performers".

"Without the right skills, people end up on the margins of society, technological progress doesn't translate into economic growth, Australia will face an uphill struggle to remain ahead in this hyper-connected world, and ultimately, lose the social glue that holds together democratic societies," Mr Schleicher writes in The Australian today. "Achieving greater equity in education is not only a social justice imperative, it is also a way to use resources more effectively, and to increase the supply of skills that fuel economic growth and promote social cohesion."

He is urging Australia to look to the surprising number of features shared by high-performing nations such as Singapore and China. These include convincing the community to value education, believe in the success of every child, and ensure teaching is more intellectually attractive.

"Australia used to have one of the world's leading school systems," Mr Schleicher writes, "but over the last decade learning outcomes have dropped to levels closer to the average of school systems in the industrialised world.

"The quarter of the most disadvantaged 15-year-olds in Singapore now show results similar to the average Australian student."

PISA is conducted every three years and measures the ability of 15-year-olds to use their science, mathematics and reading knowledge and skills to meet real-life challenges. Students from Singapore, the world's smartest 15-year-olds, are two years and four months ahead of Australian students in maths, 18 months ahead in science and 12 months in reading.

Former Business Council of Australia president and Audit Commission chairman Tony Shepherd lamented Australia's lack of academic competitiveness on the world stage. "It is a disgrace given the substantial investment we already make and not to mention the projected substantial increases," he said.

Education Minister Simon Birmingham, who earlier this year finalised a $23.5 billion school funding shake-up, said "while a strong level of funding matters, what's more important is how that Continued on Page 5 COMMENTARY P12 LAGGING BEHIND Program for International Student Assessment (PISA) 2015 Results released in December 2016 Average scores Science Reading Mathematics Singapore 556 535 564 1st 1st 1st Rank 510 503 493 14th 16th 25th Australia 493 493 490 Rank OECD average Singapore's most disadvantaged teens on par with our students Continued from Page 1 funding is used". Senator Birmingham added: "That's why we've asked David Gonski to lead a panel of experts to examine best-practice initiatives in classrooms to ensure the additional resources we're delivering are used as effectively as possible to give every student the opportunities they need to reach their potential," The Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry's director of employment, education and training, Jenny Lambert, said it was encouraging that the government had embedded minimum literacy and numeracy standards in its state funding agreements, but these should be tied to the aims of PISA, "and we are just falling behind relatively".

Last year, the results of the 2015 PISA round were released and revealed Australian students had slipped 12 months behind where they were in maths in 2003, seven months behind in science compared with 2006, and about 10 months behind in reading since 2000, when PISA began.

PISA is conducted by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development.

Mr Schleicher, the directorgeneral of the OECD's Directorate for Education, says leaders in high-performing countries have convinced their communities to make choices that value education. "Chinese parents and grandparents will invest their time, energy and money into the education of their children, their future," he writes.

He also points to the belief in the success of every child. "And the fact that students in most East Asian countries consistently believe that achievement is mainly a product of hard work, rather than inherited intelligence as many Australian students say, suggests that education and its social context can make a difference in instilling values that foster success in education."

In Australia as a keynote speaker at the Early Start Conference 2017 at the University of Wollongong, Mr Schleicher says it is important to select, train and invest in teachers.

"The challenge is not just to make teaching financially attractive - Australia does reasonably well on that - but to make teaching intellectually more attractive," he writes.

Success is about giving children a strong start, but "Australia still has some way to catch up".

"High quality early childhood education and care can have a major impact on children's cognitive abilities as well as on their socio-emotional development and it can improve social mobility across generations."

Senator Birmingham said the government agreed investment in the early years was important, "which is why we're overhauling early education and child care and delivering an extra $2.5 billion".

"With our support, the states and territories have lifted enrolment rates in early education to more than 90 per cent but they clearly still have work to do in boosting actual participation rates, with attendance data suggesting that around 30 per cent of children enrolled in early education are not participating regularly for the full 15 hours a week," the minister said.

'Chinese parents and grandparents will invest time, energy and money into education' ANDREAS SCHLEICHER OECD EDUCATION LEADER


From: The Australian, Australia  by Stefanie Balogh
27 Sep 2017

Posted in: curriculum   0 Comments

Stephen Elder speaks out against wealthy private schools 'gaming the system' to double disability funding

Posted on 10 October 2017
Stephen Elder speaks out against wealthy private schools 'gaming the system' to double disability funding

Victorian independent schools have been accused of "gaming the system" to almost double their federal funding for students with a disability.

In a rare moment of unity, the Australian Education Union and Catholic Education Melbourne have joined calls for an independent review of new disability data tied to the Gonski 2.0 school funding model.

Malcolm Turnbull and his education minister are on a schools funding publicity campaign, trying to sell their new plan, but not everyone is buying it.

Funding was previously based on medical assessment, but under the new system it is based on teachers' assessments of students' needs.

The union's federal president Correna Haythorpe called for an independent audit into "what appears to be a further gold-plating of the private system at the expense of children in public schools".

More than half the total funding increases for Australian students with a disability are set to go to Victorian independent schools in 2018, she said.

Catholic Education Melbourne executive director Stephen Elder described the new disability data as "dodgy".

"Education Minister Simon Birmingham is letting wealthy independent schools the biggest backers of his funding policies game the system," he said.

He said public funding for students with a disability would now be steered towards schools with "the most creative data collection practices" and away from students who need it.

"No one believes the new disability data is credible," Mr Elder said.

"It inherently favours wealthy schools... [they] can afford to make more adjustments for their students and they also have the staff to complete all the paperwork."

Federal Education Department figures, obtained by the union under Freedom of Information, show that disability loadings for Victorian independent schools will increase from $63.7 million in 2017 to $123.3 million next year. They will then grow to $222.2 million by 2027.

But Catholic schools stand to lose $16 million next year before their disability funding increases to $228.3 million over the next decade. Disability funding to Victorian government schools will increase by 11 per cent next year, growing to $304.2 million.

Independent Schools Victoria chief executive Michelle Green said that the figures did not lend themselves to "easy point scoring".

"These figures reflect a recognition of a need that was previously not recognised," she said.

"They also reflect a redistribution of funding within a school's entitlement, to increase the funding for students with disability at the expense of other loadings that the school might receive."

She said funding for students with a disability was not biased towards any sector.

In 2016, Victorian independent schools reported that 26 per cent of their students had a disability, according to a confidential report obtained by Fairfax Media.

This was the highest figure in any school sector in the country. In comparison, Victorian state schools reported that 17 per cent of their students had a disability and Catholic schools reported 13 per cent.

Federal Education Minister Simon Birmingham said further work was needed to improve the quality and consistency of the data.

"This new system sets clear definitions and we're implementing a range of checks for funding for students with disability to ensure funding gets to the students that need it most," he said.

He said the government was investing $20 million to improve the quality of the data and it would be independently verified. 

"Under our plan funding for students with disability will grow from $1.5 billion this year to an estimated $2.7 billion. Funding for students with disability in Victorian government schools will increase by an estimated 108.2 per cent and by 97 per cent for non-government school students."

He said the data was based on projections and it would be updated to reflect actual enrolments in 2018.

From The Age, 10 Oct, 2017

By: Henrietta Cook

Posted in: Government Funding Students with Disabilities   0 Comments

Case Study - From Greenfields site to Flourishing College - Lauretta Graham

Posted on 9 October 2017
Case Study - From Greenfields site to Flourishing College - Lauretta Graham

Above: Early days of construction...Lauretta Graham centre; Michael Avery 2nd from right; Bishop Eugene Hurley far right.

Many years ago when I was a young teacher I heard an inspirational woman speak at a Catholic Conference in Melbourne, her name was Miriam-Rose Ungunmerr-Baumann. She spoke about Having Everything's Connected.  She said: "the secret of the school's success appears to lie in its holistic approach and in its intimate knowledge of, and connection to, the local community"Miriam-Rose Ungunmerr-Baumann.  She spoke about her school in the NT.  I was totally inspired and wanted to build schools taking on her philosophy.  Since then, I have been fortunate to be invited to be the foundation Principal of St Andrew's Catholic College Redlynch, Qld and now MacKillop Catholic College in Palmerston, NT. Furthermore, I have had the opportunity to meet and laugh with this amazing woman.
Though we waited in hope through the NT wet season our school buildings were not ready for the 2012 Academic Year and we were graciously housed at the Palmerston Campus of Charles Darwin University. Here we occupied a few rooms and got on with running our school. This was a blessing it provided our first community partnership and it made it clear to us that buildings are second to people.

A school is not its buildings, a school is the community. This became our mantra. To build an authentically Catholic College our task was always to build a Community.  This takes courage and integrity from all involved in the task. The development of school and community are inseparable. It involves relationships of trust and the willingness to work together.

Through MacKillop's presence in Palmerston we endeavour to enrich the whole community.
The Challenge is: Who we are and how we operate. Where Gospels meet practice, and words meet hearts (K. Treston), and all in all helping others to become more fully the person God has created them to be.
From the first day we have worked towards being a school for the community and have had our doors open to build meaningful partnerships and ways of working with the wider community. We now enjoy many wonderful partnerships and look forward to new ones unfolding as the years progress.  Our students have just returned from Japan where they visited our Sister School Hakata High School.
The metaphor of journey runs through all that is at MacKillop. It forms the focus of our crest.
Our crest depicts a path way to Jesus through the cross. This powerful metaphor helps us to locate our place in the development of our souls.  It helps us to understand our reluctant movement from the comfort and security of what we know to the unknown. It traces our travels in desert times and to our mountain visions (J. Cutcliffe).

Finally, to build a school you need a team of people who can VISUALISE THE STEPS FROM IDEA TO FULFILLMENT.

"May your journey always be filled with blessings and may the life of Saint Mary MacKillop ignite in you the flames of faith and service".


Aerial view of the school in November 2011 three months before the school was due to open Aerial view 2017 First  community BBQ at the College


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