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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2015 Week 05 Hansard (Thursday, 7 May 2015) . . Page.. 1478 ..

campus. The current membership requirements of the board are therefore excluding a major stakeholder.

The provision in the act for a board member to be appointed after consultation with the Australian Catholic University enhances engagement of the tertiary education sector and provides more appropriate stakeholder representation on the board. At present the act specifically states that one member be appointed to the board after consultation with the ACT and Region Chamber of Commerce and Industry.

The ACT and Region Chamber of Commerce and Industry has now merged with the Canberra Business Council and has ceased to exist in the form written in this act as is. This has meant that the ACT and Region Chamber of Commerce and Industry is now unable to provide a nominee. These amendments that I have introduced will update the act to make it contemporary and future proof by simply making the wording that a member can be appointed after consultation with business and industry organisations. By deliberately but not specifically specifying a particular organisation, the current circumstances will not arise again. This will ensure that a position on the board representing the business community will be assured.

In updating and modernising the act, these amendments include services that the board provides but that are not detailed in the act currently. The board delivers curriculum, assessment and certification services to seven overseas schools under a fee-for-service arrangement. This arrangement dates back to 1989 but there is no reference in the act to the board’s role in providing these services. I have decided therefore to include these arrangements as amendments in the bill that I am introducing today. The inclusion of a specific provision for service delivery to overseas schools will ensure that the relationship the board currently has with overseas schools has a clear base in legislation.

A number of other Australian jurisdictions provide senior secondary certificates to students in overseas schools. The legislation establishing the entities responsible for issuing such certificates empowers those entities to issue the certificates to students in overseas schools. The amendments I am introducing today will bring the territory legislation in line with other jurisdictions and again provide a clear basis for this activity in legislation.

Economically, education is a major export for the ACT. Teachers from seven overseas schools who deliver the ACT curriculum visit Canberra twice a year for moderation days and to visit ACT colleges. The opportunity for ACT teachers to engage with teachers from a different culture and to form links with overseas schools is beneficial. The proposal to strengthen the act by referring to the services provided for these schools will endorse this endeavour, and the reputation of the ACT government as a good regional and international citizen will be enhanced.

In addition, these seven schools participate in the ACT senior secondary system on a fee-for-service basis and this arrangement helps to improve the budget position of the board. The combined effect of all these amendments will modernise, improve and remove impediments to the governance of the board and recognises the importance of the role of the overseas schools in adding another element of cultural diversity to the senior secondary system.

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