State-Wide Terms of Reference


On behalf of the Bishops of Western Australia, the Commission will fulfil the responsibilities as outlined in the following terms of reference as well as any other matters when so directed by the Bishops:

Role within the Church

The Commission will advance the church’s purpose for the religious and faith education of Catholic children. The commission will make a Catholic school education available to all Catholic children, insofar as this is possible. At the same time advance the church’s purpose for Catholic schools whilst embodying the church’s special preference for the poor and disadvantaged.

Provide leadership throughout the Western Australian Catholic school system and:

  • Assist parents to understand and exercise their responsibilities as educators

  • Assist school communities to be faithful to the aims of the Catholic school

  • Consult and collaborate with Catholic school communities.

State-Wide Policies

The Commission will develop, enunciate and implement state-wide policies that improve education in Catholic schools.

Official Voice for the Catholic School System

The Commission will speak officially on behalf of the Western Australian Catholic school system on matters affecting Catholic schools, and on Western Australian schooling in general. In particular, the Commission should:

  • Ensure that a Catholic viewpoint is expressed on education issues that are raised publicly and on other issues that ought to be raised

  • Represent the Western Australian Catholic school system in negotiations with Commonwealth and State Governments, educational institutions, public authorities and community organisations

  • Provide representation on statutory bodies, governmental committees, community organisations and relevant bodies

  • Publish and distribute to Catholic schools statements on matters of concern that fall within the Commission’s terms of reference

  • Offer statements of guidance to diocesan Bishops and to religious institutes

  • Prepare an annual report on the Commission’s activities that include

    • Statement on the progress of religious education and formation in Catholic schools

    • An audited statement of the Commission’s income and expenditure.

Support Catholic School Communities

The Commission will support Catholic school communities, in particular by providing:

  • Guidance in implementing Commission policies and requirements

  • Liaison and advisory personnel to assist staff, school boards and parents (so far as resources permit)

  • Guidance to school boards in discharging their duties, assisting them to foster the aims of Catholic Education and to implement their approved constitutions

  • Access to appropriate information and advice.

Professional Development 

The Commission will ascertain the professional needs of principals, teachers and other school personnel, and (so far as resources permit) provide:

  • Professional development services

  • Ongoing faith formation activities

  • Opportunities for Catholic school personnel to deepen their understanding of the principles and practices of Catholic Education

  • Advice on suitable programs for school-based professional and faith development.

The Commission will ensure that all Catholic school staff have appropriate qualifications. The Commission will ensure that all Catholic school staff have appropriate Catholic Education Commission accreditation by providing or approving suitable accreditation programs.

Preservation of Catholic Character

The Commission will enable Catholic school communities to preserve their Catholic character, and in particular:

  • Encourage close links with the wider Catholic community and assist them in this aim

  • Ensure that all school staff understand the expectations regarding their manner of life that arise from Catholic moral teaching

  • Ensure that appropriate procedures are in place to recruit, appoint, develop, assess and when necessary, dismiss Catholic school staff

  • Consider how to provide suitable personnel when planning new Catholic schools or the extension of existing schools.


Educational Standards

Monitor schools and assist them to maintain educational standards consistent with:

  • The aims of the Catholic school community

  • The requirements and standards set by government education authorities

  • Best practice judged to be consistent with the aims of the school communities

  • Innovation judged to be consistent with the aims of the school communities.


Promote the Common Good

Require principals, teachers and school boards to provide the Commission with all the information needed to fulfil its responsibilities.
Ensure that any proposals to expand, reduce or make major changes to Catholic school communities are referred to the Commission in good time, so that adequate consultation can take place before decisions are reached.

Financial Administration

The Commission will foster leadership in financial administration so that decisions taken are just, effective and reflecting a fundamental option for the poor. The Commission is to:

  • Act as the official agency to receive, distribute and account for funds received on behalf of Catholic schools from Commonwealth and State Governments and other agencies

  • Make decisions on resource sharing, after proper consultation and in accord with the principle of co-responsibility

  • Help ensure that financial resources are distributed with maximum benefit to the schools involved

  • Ensure that submissions are prepared in order to attract funding for various programs

  • Coordinate and supervise programs funded by Commonwealth and State Governments and from other agencies

  • Prepare an annual budget.


Research

Commission, conduct and cooperate in research projects that are judged to be of value to Catholic Education and in particular to:

  • Gather and maintain data essential for Commission purposes

  • Disseminate appropriate data to diocese, religious institutes, parish communities, parent organisations and school communities

  • Cooperate with other Catholic Education authorities and agencies in any new activities that emanate from research findings

  • Provide Catholic school communities, parish communities and other relevant organisations with information and advice on sound educational theory, so as to promote quality in Catholic Education and keep all concerned in touch with the Commission’s programs.

Consult with other organisations and collaborate in joint activities that are consistent with the Commission’s terms of reference and likely to be mutually beneficial.