Governance Conference Reflection
Recently we had the pleasure of hosting the Godly Governance Conference. Held in Sydney this year, we welcomed delegates from 20 Associations, most of the delegates being board members or board chairs. With delegates coming from WA, NT, NSW, ACT, VIC, SA, and TAS, it was a wonderful mix, a great time of fellowship, and building in partnership.
This year there were a few key areas that were addressed:
· Confidence around compliance
· Key relationships between the principal, leadership, and the board.
· Biblical Governance
· Contract law
· Risk Management
We commenced with a Conference Dinner, at which, Yvonne Bradley gave us four helpful ‘We remember’ statements to consider as we look ‘Beyond the Horizon’. Later in the evening, through a role play activity, Yvonne illustrated the complexity of relationships between the school and Board.
Each day we began with Gerry Beimers leading us in devotions, challenging us to consider in the light of scripture, what are the paradoxes of our boards. Also, what are the risks, weakness and hardship paradoxes facing your Board.
Anne Robinson and Peter Wilson from Prolegis Lawyers joined us to share tips for good governance and contract law. With an interesting note about the different types of ‘hats’ we may wear, ‘Governance Hats’, ‘Volunteer Hats’ or possibly an ‘Implementer Hat’ – but only one at a time! During a few sessions with Bruce Whitehead from ‘Mock Court International’ we were challenged to think carefully about Risk Management and our part in implementing policies. Part of the session involved a number of our board members participating in a mock court scenario and with convincing performances from all, it was a very entertaining morning.
Rod Thompson looked at 2 Peter 3:10-14 as he unpacked a biblical framework for governance and gave us time to consider a series of challenging grounded questions. Kathy Pereira looked at the changing shape and culture of our world and how we navigate it. Then, joined by Michelle Dempsey, unpacked and explained some resources and supports that CEN offers to associations and schools.
Merryn Van Bremen the Board Chair from Mountain District Christian School reflected, ‘We enjoyed the opportunity to build relationship with other board members from other states, discuss current hot topics, share ideas and resources and to be educated and entertained all at the same time!’
If you know of someone from your school who attended the conference, and you haven’t yet had the chance, I encourage you to have a chat with them and hear more.
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