All Independent Public Schools (IPS) are required under the Education Act (1999) to operate a School Board. In essence, the role of the School Board is one of setting the long-term future for the school and maintaining oversight of the implementation of the school Business Plan.
It is not about running the school – that is the job of the principal, but rather about providing additional support and expertise to help the school achieve the best possible outcomes for students.
Chair, Dalmain School Board
What is the purpose of the school board?
The school board is formed for the purpose of enabling parents and other community members to engage in activities that will enhance the education provided to students by the school.
What is the make-up of the board?
The school board can consist between 5 and 15 members. Parent members must outnumber staff members and the Principal must be a board member.
At Dalmain, we currently have a board of 10 elected members (6 parent members and 4 staff members), plus 2 community members.
What term do elected members serve?
A maximum of 3 years. Members are obviously free to leave before this should circumstances demand, but at the end of a 3 year period, positions must be made available and nominations sought.
How often does the board meet?
Typically the Dalmain School Board meets once per term, with meetings lasting about 2 hours. At certain times, the board may feel that additional meetings are warranted if there are tasks or activities that demand extra attention (such as defining the school Business Plan).
What does the school board do/not do?
Over the last 3 years the Dalmain School Board has been involved in a number of decisions about the school including : the establishment of the school Business Plan, the management of the school budget, the introduction of the new school uniform, the implementation of the “school app”, the approval of the parent contributions and the upcoming development of the nature playground.
The school board will often decide to establish sub-committees for larger projects, so that a wider range of community members and expertise can assist in decision making.
The table below shows some of the things that the school board should be involved with and also some of the things that are not in their remit.
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Is training provided?
Yes. All school board members are offered training regarding their role as a board member. This is provided by the Department of Education and is very effective in getting board members to understand both their personal role and the collective responsibilities of the board.
What would be expected of me as a parent member of the school board?
To attend school board meetings and then engage with the parent community to discuss with them both the outcomes of meetings and potential new topics that could be discussed by the board.
You are the voice of the parent community on the school board.
What should I do if I am interested in nominating?
Please feel free to speak either Mr Boyes or any of the current parent members:
Justin Burt, Bianca Galipo, Beth Weston, Nick Wood
Some reflections from current parent board members:
The school board gives parents and community members an opportunity to be involved in the schools decision making. We are able to access information on spending and plans for future school improvement and give input towards initiatives that benefit our own children.
Justin Burt – Dalmain School Board Member
Being a member of the school board has given me a fascinating insight into the challenges of running a successful school. At Dalmain we have been lucky to have a number of strong parent contributors to the board over the past 3 years when so much change has been adopted at the school. It is very rewarding to feel like an integral part of the decision making process and have the views of the parent community so readily welcomed.
Simon Clark – Chair, Dalmain School Board