Insurance Update

We are please to advise that DOBCEL has successfully secured insurance cover for all DOBCEL schools with a range of providers from 1 April 2024 to replace the previous CCI policies.

While as expected there are premium increases following the departure of CCI from the market, an extensive process was undertaken to ensure we have achieved the best available price and terms.

Further details will be forthcoming early next term, including claims management arrangements for the various policies.

A copy of the Public Liability Certificate of Currency will be loaded into the primary schools “School Finance & Administration Knowledge Bank” tomorrow and a copy will be forwarded to the secondary schools Principal and Business Manager.

Should there be any claims requiring attention over the term break, please refer to Paul Jans, Dean Pidgeon or Matthew Macdonald in the first instance.

Share this:

Announcement of Retirement - Murray Macdonald

For those not already aware, Murray Macdonald (Education Consultant – Northern Zone) has advised that he will retire at the end of Term 2.

Murray has had an outstanding career in Catholic education spanning 44 years as a teacher, principal, and Education Consultant, across three dioceses.

While much more will be said later, Murray has left every school community he has been involved with a better place for him being there.

His dedicated service, not to mention his razor-sharp wit, will be greatly missed.

We look forward to formally acknowledging Murray’s career later in the year.

The Education Consultant – Northern Zone position will be advertised on the DOBCEL website early next week.

Share this:

Child Link

Further to information contained in the Executive Directors Update #8 (29 February 2024) please ensure the following:

Action:

  1. If done not already, the principal can nominate up to 7 school staff as Child Link Users. We recommend nominating individuals in your school who have responsibility for child wellbeing and safety, such as Deputy Principal, Pastoral Wellbeing Leader, Learning Diversity Leader, or Wellbeing Worker.Email your nominations to Jacinta Cook Jcook@dobcel.catholic.edu.au (Child Safe Manager) before the end of Term 1.

  2. The principal should log onto the Victorian Governments Information Sharing and MARAM online learning system using the same link used to complete your Mandatory Reporting Module.
    The link is here.
    Select the combined “Information sharing and Child Link training module”. Once the principal has completed training, please send an email Jacinta Cook (Child Safe Manager) at Jcook@dobcel.catholic.edu.au who will authorise you/the principal as a Child Link user.

  3. Once your nominated staff have completed the combined training, you/the principal will be able to authorise them for Child Link in connection to your school.

  4. Child Link training has been allocated specifically for DOBCEL staff, the session dates are either 19 April or 21 April2024. If you are unable to attend either of these dates, please ensure you register for a session prior to 17 May 2024.

Please Note: It is a requirement of the Victorian State Government that all DOBCEL schools are onboarded to Child Link by the end of Term 2. This will ensure we have access to the resources allocate to training and support.

Share this:

Strategic Planning: Co-design workshop slides

The presentation by Pasi Sahlberg and Dave Runge at the February DLG have now been uploaded to the Diocesan Principal folder on Google drive. Principals are encouraged to share relevant slides from the presentation with your staff and SACs when discussing the work that DOBCEL and key stakeholders are working towards, in moving our schools to a higher performing system of Catholic schools.

Share this:

School Advisory Council Chair Details

With the commencement of the 2024 school year, some schools may have had a turnover of their SAC Chair. To ensure that DOBCEL has the current details of all SAC Chairs, schools are asked to please advise Kerrie Zammit of the name, phone number and email address of their current SAC Chair.

It would be appreciated if emails can be submitted prior to the end of Term 1.

Share this:

Term 2 DLG Arrangements

The Term 2 DLG meeting in Horsham will be held on Thursday 9 May only, followed by dinner.

Due to the early Easter this year, Friday 10 May is the opportunity for school communities to celebrate Mothers’ Day, and we recognise this priority for Principals to be present in school communities.

The DLG will be primarily dedicated to strategic planning (led by Pasi and Dave), and as such, is a high impact opportunity for us all.

Dinner will be held as usual on Thursday evening. Please email execdirector@dobcel.catholic.edu.au if you will not be attending.

We note that some Zone meetings will still occur in Horsham via your local arrangements.

Share this:
Share this:

Principal Announcement

Mr Vince Muscatello has advised that he will not be seeking renewal of his contract as Principal at St Paul's Primary School, Mildura beyond the 2024 school year. Vince commenced as Principal at St Paul's in 2013, after eight years as Deputy Principal at Sacred Heart Primary School, Mildura.

Throughout his time at St Paul's, Vince has been involved in the implementation of Professional Learning Communities (PLC) in collaboration with School Wide Positive Behaviour Supports (SWPBS) and as a pilot school of the Structured Literacy Approach.

There have been major refurbishment projects during his time with a new staff car park, pickup/drive through area, reverse cycle air conditioning, new roof and ceiling refurbishment for the school, junior playground and numerous landscaping projects.

Vince has been a strong advocate for St Paul’s and the wider Sunraysia region throughout his principalship.

St Paul's Primary School has continued to thrive and evolve as a Catholic educational institution, during Vince’s tenure.

We thank Vince for his contribution to the St Paul's community and Catholic education in the Diocese of Ballarat. We wish him the very best in his future endeavours.

Catholic Education Ballarat will now commence the recruitment campaign for a new Principal with an anticipated commencement date of January 2025. 

Share this:

Tom Sexton
Executive Director, Catholic Education Ballarat

Share this:

Annual Report to School Community

The 2023 Annual Report to the School Community (ARSC) is now open and can be accessed via this link SmarterSoft. You may also access SmarterSoft via CEVN ARSC.

A Training guide is available via the SmarterSoft platform to support users to navigate the new system and is also attached to assist you with completing the Annual Report.

The completion date for the ARSC 2023 is Friday 10 May, 2024. Please contact Susan Crowe if you require assistance.

Share this:

Principal Attestations

A reminder that Principal Attestations must be completed by Wednesday 27 March, 2024. Thank you to those who have already uploaded them to VCEA.

Share this:

Tom Sexton
Executive Director, Catholic Education Ballarat

Share this:

Term 1 Week 8 DLG Pre-recording

As the VACPSP Conference is occurring this week, please find attached below a pre-recording for your regular Week 8 DLG VC meeting.

All DOBCEL principals are expected to view this presentation sometime this week.

Share this:

Term 1 Week 4 DLG Recording

The full recording of the DLG from 22 February is now available in the Diocesan Principal folder on the Google Drive.

Share this:

School Advisory Council Chair Details

With the commencement of the 2024 school year, some schools may have had a turnover of their SAC Chair. To ensure that DOBCEL has the current details of all SAC Chairs, schools are asked to please advise Kerrie Zammit of the name, phone number and email address of their current SAC Chair.

It would be appreciated if emails can be submitted prior to the end of Term 1.

Share this:

Enrolment Policy Review

Principals provided very valuable feedback to support policy development through recent DLG and zone meetings. In progressing the enrolment priority criteria, from your feedback we have recognised the complexity of parish boundaries and the general understanding of contemporary parishes.  We have moved away from this concept and identified the geographically closest catholic school determines priority rather than parish boundary. To determine the “closest” we would lean into the tools used to calculate conveyance allowances. 

We have tried to reduce overall the number of criteria for when the number of applications exceeds the number of places, so that when you get to the categories other than Catholic, principal discretion will come into play to enable balance in the enrolment cohort. 

Below is the section from the Policy-:

Enrolment priorities

Schools must follow the order of enrolment priority outlined below. As Catholic schools, the first priority is the provision of a Catholic education for Catholic children from the school’s parish/s. While Catholic schools in the Diocese of Ballarat are open to families of all faith and nonreligious backgrounds, they must give priority to enrol Catholic and Orthodox children ahead of other Christian denominations, denominations other than Christian or children of no religious affiliation.

DOBCEL Primary Schools

The order of priority for DOBCEL primary schools is:

  1. Siblings of children already enrolled in the school
  2. Catholic children for whom this is the closest*Catholic Primary school to the child’s predominant residential address
  3. Catholic children for whom this is not the closest* Catholic Primary school to the child’s predominant residential address (for pastoral reasons, following referral of parents back to the closest school and discussions between colleague Principals)
  4. Other children who are seeking a Catholic education with priority given to those for whom this is the closest* Catholic Primary School to the child’s predominant residential address

* as measured by the student conveyance method - Student Conveyance Allowance System (SCAS)

* in shared care arrangements – where one parent has more than 50% shared care then this would be the residential address to determine the priority of enrolment.  In the case of equal (50/50) shared care then the closest residential address shall determine the priority of enrolment

DOBCEL Secondary Colleges

The order of priority for DOBCEL secondary colleges is:

  1. Siblings of children already enrolled in the school
  2. Catholic children as evidenced by sacraments for whom this is the closest* Catholic co-educational Secondary school of the Diocese to the child’s predominant residential address, and have attended a Catholic primary school
  3. Catholic children as evidenced by sacraments for whom this is closest* Catholic co-educational Secondary school of the Diocese to the child’s predominant residential address, and have not attended a Catholic primary school
  4. Other children who have attended a Catholic primary school for whom this is closest* Catholic co-educational Secondary school of the Diocese to the child’s predominant residential address
  5. Children of Alumni
  6. Other children who are seeking a Catholic secondary education and have not attended a Catholic primary school for whom this is closest* Catholic co-educational Secondary school of the Diocese to the child’s predominant residential address

*  as measured by the student conveyance method - Student Conveyance Allowance System (SCAS)

* in shared care arrangements – where one parent has more than 50% shared care then this would be the residential address to determine the priority of enrolment.  In the case of equal (50/50) shared care then the closest residential address shall determine the priority of enrolment

As with previous feedback – if you could identify any elements that would not work within your current processes would be appreciated.

If this feedback could be emailed to Matthew Byrne (mbyrne@dobcel.catholic.edu.au) and Megan Ioannou (mioannou@dobcel.catholic.edu.au) by Wednesday 27 March. 

Share this:

DOBCEL Compliance Training for 2024

All DOBCEL staff will shortly begin receiving emails about compulsory online compliance training for completion via the SALT compliance platform. Each school has a nominated SALT administrator.

We believe the time identified for the completion of modules is generous.  We acknowledge that this is another consideration in your management of teacher workload.  If you have concerns relating to achieving the requirements for staff new to DOBCEL, please speak with your Ed Con.

Weekly Staff Communcation as below

The system-wide delivery of compliance training is most efficiently delivered online. The training serves two purposes-:

  • to foster safe, respectful and harmonious places of work; and 
  • to ensure that DOBCEL can demonstrate it is meeting regulatory obligations, particularly in relation to workplace health and safety.

The completion of these modules demonstrates DOBCEL and school commitment to healthy and positive places of work, and we ask all staff to complete the online modules to build and maintain their awareness of this commitment, including their rights and responsibilities as a DOBCEL employee.

In 2024, there are two modules for all staff to complete which should take no more than 4.5 hours. Leadership staff are required to undertake an additional module which should take no more than 2.5 hours. Noting, that if the employee feels confident with the topic area, they can go directly to the assessment to demonstrate their knowledge rather than to work through the module in full.

SALT Compliance Training

Staff are required to complete the 2024 training modules listed above by the end of Term 4, 2024. 

Additional Training Requirements for all staff
In addition to the above mandatory SALT training requirements, all staff are required to complete the following in the annual training:

  • Mandatory Reporting module via MARAM
  • Anaphylaxis Briefing (provided by the school’s anaphylaxis supervisor)
  • Diabetes Management – Level 1: Introductory Training (if not previously completed as it is a one off training requirement) (online training)

Additional Training Requirements for nominated staff
Further annual training requirements for nominated school staff are:

  • First Aid
  • Anaphylaxis Management Training
  • Asthma Management
  • Diabetes Management – Level 2: Intermediate Training (if not previously completed)

The above training will be arranged by each school.  DOBCEL can provide details of providers for this training if required.

Additional Compliance Training Requirements for staff new to DOBCEL in 2024
Staff new to DOBCEL in 2024 are required to complete additional compliance training in their first year of employment unless they have evidence that they have completed equivalent modules with their previous employer. 

These staff are required to undertake all training modules in the 3-year Compliance Training Cycle within the first year to ensure they are aware of their rights and responsibilities. They will then join the annual Compliance Training Cycle for subsequent years.

Details regarding SALT access, including passwords and required modules will be emailed to new staff upon commencement by the local school administrator for SALT. The additional modules should take no longer than twelve hours in total to be completed by the end of Term 4, 2024. School leadership will work with staff new to DOBCEL regarding management of workload demands and the completion of these requirements across the course of the year.

If you require any further information or assistance please contact your school SALT administrator, Compliance and Risk Support Officer or Andrea Warr, Manager Assurance and Risk, on email or 0498 490 749.

Share this:

CEW Mass and Dinner Invitations

Invitations for the Catholic Education Week Mass and Dinner, taking place at Damascus College on 3 May, will be sent out to Principals.

The invitations are for the following Diocesan groups:

  • Recognition of 30 years of service to Catholic Education
  • Nominees for the Spirit of Catholic Education Award
  • Principals of the above two categories

Principals are asked to disseminate the invitations to their relevant staff. Please be aware that due to the large numbers of recipients this year, unfortunately guest numbers have been limited to the following:

  • Recognition of 30 years of service to Catholic Education: 2 guests
  • Nominees for the Spirit of Catholic Education Award: 1 guest
  • Principals of the above two categories: no guests

RSVPs are due no later than Thursday 28 March (last day of term). We look forward to celebrating this significant milestone with as many diocesan staff as possible.

Share this:

Tom Sexton
Executive Director, Catholic Education Ballarat

Share this:

Deputy/Assistant Principal and Senior Leader Network 2024 - Update

Late last year members of this Network, along with Principals, were provided the opportunity to complete a survey on the professional learning they felt would be most beneficial.

Feedback from this survey has informed the professional learning that will be covered, and will include: 

•    Leadership Formation 
•    Understanding the School Improvement Framework 
•    Sharing of experience/best practice 

The Network is for both primary and secondary leaders. However, where differentiation of content is required, this will occur.

Please note, that the update letter for network participants (below) will be sent out to the DP/AP and Senior Leader Network members tomorrow morning.

For any queries please contact Fiona Murphy or Janet Claassen 

Share this: