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ISV, AISNSW and AISSA to leave Independent Schools Council of Australia

As a result of the recent ISCA governance structure review, it has emerged that ISV, AISNSW and AISSA are to leave ISCA and have given 12 months’ notice of their withdrawal.

We will continue to try to obtain information on what the new structure will look like, but a new constitution is being drawn up as we speak. Our initial understanding is that AISNSW and ISV wished to have more say from an executive director level than what the current ISCA board structure allowed.

A new standalone and competing body will provide its own Commonwealth advocacy to schools in addition to local services, and local members will not be affected (as ISCA was an association of AIS, as this new body will be).

It will also likely mean that staff will lose their jobs at ISCA’s headquarters in Canberra.

The breakaway group argues that they want to provide a stronger education and research voice for independent schools and is concerned by international organisations beginning to help schools become for-profit and forfeit government funding. Therefore, they want to be competitive with their offerings.

I believe that there may also be some personality politics at play and suggest that we remain circumspect for now, especially until we discern the intentions and capacity of the new organisation.

AACS will be assessing the revelations and how best we can ensure Christian education is supported into the future by whatever school representative bodies exist. We have requested information and meetings in addition to our preliminary conversations.

We are unaware as to whether the breakaway group has consulted any of our schools in New South Wales, Victoria or South Australia. Still, please let us know if their representatives have spoken with your school or principal.

We are aware that it will cause several headaches for certain interstate systems straddling two organisations.

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