Western Australia Minister for Education Elizabeth Constable
Call For More Public Schools To Take On Independent Status
Victor P Taffa
The Western Australia State Government today called for more schools to become Independent Public Schools to build on the success of the initiative.
Education Minister Liz Constable said feedback from the 34 Independent Public Schools that began at the start of the year had been overwhelmingly positive and the schools had already experienced a surge in community involvement.
The Minister said schools that took on independent status such as Roseworth Primary School in Girrawheen where today’s announcement was made – had the ability to attract high calibre community members to their boards.
“The school boards have greater responsibility and input into the strategic direction of their local school, participating in the selection of a principal and endorsing school business plans.” the Minister said.
“Board members contribute in an important way to the running of their school, helping to drive innovation and reflect the needs and wishes of the local community and bringing with them a diverse wealth of knowledge and expertise.”
Independent Public Schools, while remaining part of the public school system, have the ability to make decisions about their own curriculum, staffing selection, school assets and budgets.
The Minister invited interested schools and communities to consider expressing an interest to operate as an Independent Public School from 2011.
“This call for schools to join the second intake signifies the Government’s continuing drive to hand more control to schools and their communities.” the Minister said.
“The strong interest shown demonstrates the desire for moving decision-making, responsibility and accountability closer to where it matters – the classroom.”
Expressions of interest from schools keen to join the next intake of Independent Public Schools close on April 27, giving them more than two months to consult with their communities and submit an Expression of Interest.
They will then have a full semester to participate in the induction and transition program and prepare themselves to commence formal operation as an Independent Public School at the start of the 2011 school year.