Sandringham College Update (re: August 2012 School Council Motion for a new school in Beaumaris to the Minister of Education)

 The 2013 school year is now in its second week and we thought it opportune to update our college council and community of what has happened thus far: In brief:

1. Over the Christmas holiday period there has been a lot of discussion with the Department of Education and Early Childhood and with the office of the Minister of Education, Mr Martin Dixon, regarding the future plans for Sandringham College.

2. The educational regions have been reduced from 9 to 4. There has been a significant reduction of regional personnel and key changes to leadership personnel.

3. We have a new Regional Director, Mr John Allman. The college president, Ron Wakefield and I have met him. We toured the Beaumaris Campus and fully briefed Mr Allman. He will have a direct role in providing information to the Minister of Education about a new school for Beaumaris.

4. The Department of Education and Early Childhood have formed a specific and high level reference group that will advise the Minister. This reference group will be small but comprised of key Department of Education and Early Childhood personnel, including the Regional Director and Executive Director, System Design and Integration Division and Director, Infrastructure and Sustainability Division. Sandringham College will have the council president, the school principal and a school councillor on the reference group.

5. The process will also include contracting a company to provide more information, via a “feasibility study” for the Minister of Education.

6. We are working with the Department of Education and Early Childhood to finalise the terms of reference for the feasibility study. Sandringham College has an expectation that the terms of reference will be made public

7. It is our expectation that the Reference group of the Department of Education and Early Childhood will be underway within a week. The President has made it clear to the Minister of Education and senior officials that the matter has to be resolved in time for parents to make decisions for 2014 with confidence. We expect this to be no later than the end of term one this year

8. We have had several further discussions with the local MLA Murray Thompson to keep him continually updated with the latest information and to seek his assistance in the process.

9. Sandringham College has initiated many significant changes at the Beaumaris, Bluff Road and Holloway Road campuses as a result of input from parents and colleagues in Primary schools last year. These include developing curriculum links with the Walker Foundation for year 7; introducing an Ipad program; developing a Sports Academy for 2014 and beginning the discussion to become an IB school in the near future. The links between the Junior School and Senior School have been strengthened with Year 10 students attending the Senior School to complete VCE / VET subjects

10. Sandringham College has held excellent discussions with the Mayor and Councillors of Bayside Council relating to the need for access to extra sporting facilities in the area and the potential there is for that to occur on the Beaumaris site

We believe it is time for us to call the original reference group and current reference group together again. Other community members are also invited. We will hold a meeting on Wednesday February 20 at 7 pm at Beaumaris Campus Library where we can give you an update and seek your input on the way forward.

As always, please feel free to contact Howard Kelly on hrkelly2@bigpond.com or 0417723947 to raise any matters of concern or suggestions for issues to discuss at the proposed meeting

Allen McAuliffe

College principal

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