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Welcome

This month’s eNews is a bumper issue with a budget delivered and an election being called. The budget, promising to be the Coalition’s fresh plan, came in last Tuesday. There is a Christian School’s Guide to understanding the budget in eNews and I have used headings to make it easier for you to follow. Other than those two issues which take up most of this newsletter the other big news is the Tasmanian Discrimination case. The complainant has withdrawn, which is a sort of a “win”, but not really. The freedom of churches and Christians to express their view and shape Christian schooling based on their beliefs remains a prominent issue. Don’t miss the delightful ‘wussification’ and goldfish comment in ‘Kids are Sponges for Bad Parenting’ toward the end of eNews. 

Just a reminder that the ga ps in particular words is to ensure the eNews email gets through your spam filter. 

If you are going to the Policy Forum, I hope to see you there.

Martin.

Martin for eNews

UPDATE

Short Updates

Last Sunday, Prime Minister Turnbull, requested that the Governor General to dissolve both houses of parliament and hold a double-dissolution election. Both houses will be dissolved, the writs issued and a July 2nd election will be held. Hang onto your hats…

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The Budget Explained for Christian Schools

There is an extra $1.2 billion over the 2018 – 2020 period, but the states will need to meet new federal government conditions. This falls short of the $4.5 billion for 2018 – 19 promised under ALP’s Gonski school reforms…

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Foreign Aid – Where is our Moral Outrage?

Many of us have been too quiet about the cuts to foreign aid. If we were as vocal about this area as funding to our schools, I wonder whether our politicians would have allowed such a vicious razor to have been used. It is disappointing to see that this budget…

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Tasmanian Anti-Discrimination Commission Case Development

The Anti-Discrimination Commission had said the Catholic Church had a case to answer after distributing a church booklet entitled ‘Don’t Mess With Marriage’ after having received a complaint from Ms Delaney. “The two parties agreed…

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Edu cation Funding is a Mess

Glenn Savage writing in The Guardian (April 28th) doesn’t hold back in his overview and criticism of the current state of Australia’s school funding system. He concludes, “If the Coalition keeps going down the current path, its most enduring…

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Disability Funding

Informal reports tell us that the outcomes of the leaked Nationally Consistent Collect ion of Data (NCCD) 2015 data will result in an upcoming Council of Australia Governments (COAG) paper. Greater transparency and clarity in this regard is welcome. All along the concern has been that the data is teacher…

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Is There Government vs Non-government Inequality?

On Q&A ABC (April 18th) commentator Jane Caro claimed that money that should have been given to needy government schools was being given to…

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Federal Funding Restored to Three Islamic Schools

It is good to see that the federal government has reinstated funding to three Islamic schools (associated with the Australian Federation of Islamic Councils [AFIC] )after they reformed their financial management and governance structures in accord…

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2016 Global Christian Schools Network Gathering

This gathering is to be held in Jakarta, Indonesia, from 9-15 October 2016. Also preceding and including is the Inaugural Students Global Christian Schools Gathering to be held in the same location from 3-15 October 2016.

Click here for registration information on the Global Christian Schools Network website. Registration is now open. 

ADVICE

Caretaker Conventions

Explaining the caretaker conventions can be a most useful object lesson for secondary students, giving students insights into the value of a core tenet of the Westminster system, something that contributes to healthy and responsible government.

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What is so Outstanding About Those Finns?

Recently Geoff Beech, previous Principal of National Institute of Christian Education (NICE) and friend of AACS sent in these thoughts and comments about the Finnish schooling system…

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John Collier – European Christian Educ ation – Part 4

Click here for Part 4 of John Collier’s Study of Christian Educ ation in Scandinavia and Europe. 

The Reason for Changing Enrolments Patterns

Keen analyst of school enrolment, former ALP Senator John Black, wrote in The Australian (April 30th) on the changing enrolment numbers between sectors and the reasons why. Here are the interesting and relevant parts from Black’s overview…

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Christianity is the Greatest Shaper of Australia Says John Howard

Rob Ward writes for Eternity Magazine and spoke with ex-Prime Minister John Howard about the influence and importance of Christianity in Australia today (May 2016). Ward poses the question, “Should the influence of Christian values be consigned to the history books? A short and worthwhile read.

Click here for the full article.

Creating a Child Safe Culture

This School Governance (20 April) article talks about going further than simply having a set of policies in place. I recommend reading this article. “The attitudes of a school towards…

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Q&A’s All-Christian Panel Told to be Civil to Those who Disagree

Ben Doherty writing in The Guardian (April 26th) reflects on what Catholic philosopher John Haldane said on Q&A about the need for greater civility and the ability to have ‘reasonable disagreement’ so that divisive issues…

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Is the Christian Voice Being Shut Out?

Brad Chilcot, lead pastor of Activate Church in Adelaide and founder of Welcome to Australia, writing an opinion piece in The Guardian (April 25th) challenges the popular Christian perception about current secular persecution, saying…

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Legal Actions Against Schools: Is Your School Prepared?

School Governance (Apr 28th) ran this helpful reminder about school’s contract and ‘duty of care’ responsibilities. “In recent years, litigation has become more prevalent in many areas of our…

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OTHER INTERESTING ARTICLES

Can our Federalism Feuds be Fixed by Looking Elsewhere?

This interesting article by Alan Fenna in The Conversation (April 26) explores the problems within Australia’s approach to federalism and the dysfunctional unilateralism that characterises intergovernmental relations. He also explores some more successful over seas ‘federation’ models and is a worthwhile read.

Click here for full article.

Parents are Formidable

Here is a great idea for a newsletter editorial. Kathy Pereira, State Executive Officer for NSW CEN schools recently wrote… “I just thought I would share with you an interesting article in the Sydney Morning Herald titled ‘Everyday heroes not hard to find’”…

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School Bans Hugging in Favour of Caution

The Geelong Advertiser reports that St Patrick’s Primary School has told students to find ways, other than hugging, to show affection. The school’s principal John Grant said…

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Kids are Sponges for Bad Parenting

Australian Education journalist Natasha Bita reflects on frazzled parents struggling to raise balanced kids and loosing key skills along the way. This is an interesting article that could provide the stimulus for a great newsletter editorial…

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Key Reasons Why Teachers Quit

School Governance (April 28th) included a Guardian article that reports on survey findings about the reasons why teachers leave the profession. Part of the commentary reads, “The importance of teacher…

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How Autism can Make the Teenage Years Even Tougher

Fairfax journalist (May 7th) Clare Kermond shares the story of Jack’s struggles and techniques of working with autism. Click here for this is a helpful article.