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AACS AGM and the National Policy Forum – Canberra May 24-26th

Have you registered for the AACS AGM? Come along and enjoy drinks and canapes and the interesting reports. The NPF is only a week and a half away. If you’re coming I hope you’ve invited your local federal MP to the Monday parliamentary dinner. Members will be in the house at that time. Those who can’t make it along to dinner are often willing to meet with you in their rooms beforehand or for drinks before the dinner. I’m looking forward to catching up with many of you.

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Quick Political Issue Update

In the electoral round now is the time to put up funding policy as the parties are ‘thinking through’ their policies in preparation for the 2016 election.

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The 2015 Budget

You probably noticed the Treasurer’s budget speech made no mention of education funding. That’s because the 2015-17 funding period has been set down in previous budgets. Our schools are very pleased that the 2015-17 funding period is predictable (based on last year’s funding, indexed and adjusted based on census data) and stable. Therefore our summary is…

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NAPLAN Automarking

NAPLAN’s in the news as this week the NAPLAN bus has arrived. An interesting debate has erupted over computers marking the written component of NAPLAN. ACARA General Manager, Dr Stanley Rabinowitz has said he was…

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Privacy – One year on. Are you Privacy Compliant?

It’s been just over 12 months now since the introduction of the Australian Privacy Principles (APPs) and schools should at some stage review whether they have good privacy practice in place (enacting the school’s new privacy policy and complying with the APP requirements). AACS provided…

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Finding Suitably Qualified Teachers – Using ‘Permission to Teach’

The challenge of finding suitably qualified Christian teachers, particularly for smaller, non-metropolitan schools can be a challenging one. In responding to this challenge it is most important that…

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Teachers say “We don’t have time for mental health”

“Half of the country’s teachers believe that they have no time to focus on the mental health of students, a nationwide survey of teachers has found…

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Should the States be in Charge of School Funding?

Last year’s Commission of Audit (COA) recommended the devolution of funding to the states. Christopher Pyne gave some reassurance at 2014’s National Policy Forum that the federal government will stay in a direct funding relationship with the Independent sector. However the question remains…

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ACNC Update

There’s good news on the ACNC front. Firstly, it would appear from Assistant Treasurer Josh Frydenberg’s statement, “I can say to you it’s not a priority for us to proceed with that at this time” that the Federal Government’s backdown on plans to abolish the ACNC appear to be a…

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ACNC – Updating your Charitable Sub-Type

Business Managers of schools are still required to complete other questions in the ACNC 2014 and 2015 Annual Information Statements (AIS). All charities are required to choose (by July 1st) the charity sub-type which reflects the…

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Electronic Super Processing

Business Managers are reminded that from July 1, 2015 organisations with 20 or more employees will be legally required to remit and pay superannuation electronically in a mandated format. This deadline is only two months away and you have in place a SuperStream implementation plan.

Updated Low SES and ELP Loadings’ Calculations

As business managers will know, most federal recurrent funding for schools is collected annually. However the values used to calculate the Low Socioeconomic Status (Low-SES) Loading and the English Language Proficiency (ELP) Loading are calculated every two years. We have now been informed…

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Tax Discussion Paper – Attention Business Manager

The federal government’s recently launched tax discussion paper outlines the tax concessions currently available to different types of Not For Profits (NFPs) and challenges the sector to justify its “competitive advantage.” Submissions (due by June 1st) are invited to respond to…

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2015 Student Attendance Data Collection

The Federal Department of Education and Training (Aus DET) has informed all schools about requirements for this year’s Student Attendance submission. The Student Attendance System (STATS) is now open for initialisation, and schools will be required to complete this step before…

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Victorian Human Rights Review

The Victorian Attorney General has announced a review of The Charter of Human Rights and Responsibilities Act 2006 which was required after eight years of the Charter’s operation (2015). This Charter was introduced in 2006 by the former Labor Government and outlines how…

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Australian Law Reform Commission Review – ‘Traditional Rights and Freedoms’

The Attorney-General, Senator George Brandis has asked the Australian Law Reform Commission (ALRC) to review Commonwealth legislation to identify provisions that unreasonably encroach upon traditional rights, freedoms and privileges. Initial submissions responding…

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Guidelines for School Playgrounds

The Victorian Education department has released a helpful set of guidelines for playground safety management. From the introduction …

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OTHER INTERESTING MATERIAL

‘Pointless Paperwork’

An increasingly problematic issue for our schools is the way in which teachers are being swamped by paperwork and administrative compliance which then takes them away from their key task of ‘leading in learning’. This issue is a real problem for school leaders as they seek to ensure their…

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Christopher Pyne’s Four Pillars

The following extract is from the Sir Robert Menzies lecture that Christopher Pyne delivered in Melbourne – Wed 29 April. It outlines the broader philosophical rationale that the Minister is applying to federal educational policy at the present time.

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