Page 2515 - Week 09 - Tuesday, 6 August 2013

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This government is about growing our economy, about ensuring that there are more jobs, a record level of employment and the highest growth of the non-resource jurisdictions, as a result of the policy settings of this government.


MR DOSZPOT: My question is to the Minister for Education and Training. The approval process for non-government schools is that you firstly give in-principle approval to an application and then appoint a registration panel to assess whether the schools meet the various requirements of the Education Act. Minister, who contributes to the in-principle approval process?

MS BURCH: I thank Mr Doszpot for his question. There are two parts. There is the in-principle approval and then there is quite a period of time for the schools to come back with the registration process, and that is another quite separate, rigorous process. In respect of the in-principle approval process, there is a notification. There are comments sought from the public. There is a public notification. There is the ability for interested groups to make comment in support or non-support for those in-principle approvals.

I am provided with advice that goes to any impact on local schools and then I make a decision about whether I support the in-principle approval state or not. That is quite separate and I think there has been some misunderstanding that it automatically equates to registration. That is quite a separate process altogether, Mr Doszpot.

MADAM SPEAKER: A supplementary question, Mr Doszpot.

MR DOSZPOT: Minister, who determines the composition of the registration panel and what criteria are used for their selection?

MS BURCH: It is pulled together through the Education and Training Directorate. There is certainly a mix of education experience. There are directorate officials. There are people with experience of school leadership, public school leadership and also non-government school leadership, in there. I know there has been some commentary in recent times about the composition of those. I have certainly not had any direct call to me to say that that is a problem, other than the most recent public commentary. I have also written to a number of groups and we are coming close to the end of a call for submissions about what we can do and a look at the processes. To me, it is quite clear under the act, the process about in-principle approval, but there has been public commentary. That has been in play for a number of years, so I am quite happy to take advice and to hear community comments, and I will make judgements on that.

MADAM SPEAKER: A supplementary question, Mr Wall.

MR WALL: Minister, do you intend to introduce an appeals process and, if so, at what stage would the appeals process be triggered and who would have a right of appeal?

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