(return to contents)
The CEOM Strategic
Plan 2011–2015 identified several key objectives which were relevant to
Planning, including the:
The CEOM Planning Unit marked
a significant step in the achievement of these objectives with the successful
completion of a number of key projects, including:
Entering the next iteration of the CEOM
Strategic Plan 2015–19, the Planning Unit is preparing to extend this agenda
into further actualisation of planning objectives and the development of more
innovative practice to better meet school and community needs.
Contemporary Learning spaces at newly constructed school, St Clare's, Truganina.
(return to top)
Archdiocese of Melbourne Strategic School Provision Plan
The CEOM has achieved a significant milestone with
the preparation of the first of its kind Strategic School Provision Plan for
the Archdiocese of Melbourne. The Plan will confidently guide Catholic future education
provision across the whole Archdiocese. It is designed to ensure the
appropriate number, location and timely delivery of new schools into the
future. The study also takes stock of existing schools and their capacity to
cater for future provision demand in their catchment areas.
The Plan provides clear direction on the future
demand for Catholic education and provides a framework to inform decisions in
respect of capital works expenditure ensuring the efficient and timely delivery
of Catholic education.
Recognition of Catholic schools in the planning process
An agreed process has been achieved with the
Metropolitan Planning Authority (MPA), to be consistently applied for
strategically justified Catholic schools, as part of the Precinct Structure
Planning process, providing more certainty in the delivery of Catholic schools.
Molly McQueenYear 12 student in 2014 Avila College, Mount Waverley. Profoundly deaf and totally dependent on two cochlear implants to hear, Molly McQueen graduated from Avila College, Mount Waverley, at the end of 2014 with an ATAR of 84.6 and is now studying psychology and forensic science at Swinburne University.
I think the best thing I can say about my time at Avila College is that they treated me as a normal person and made sure my disability didn’t stop me doing anything that I wanted to do at school. So many activities, like the Year 10 study trip to Italy, will stay with me for a lifetime.
I always thought it must be pretty expensive to provide for someone like me, but when I stopped to think about everything Avila did it reinforced that I had the best time at high school.
The personalised support I received was wonderful –from radio frequency microphones that transmitted directly into my ear and specialist computer equipment, to teachers being my ears at swimming carnivals and providing a note taker in Year 12 English.
And it went well beyond funding. So many teachers were there for me, like Mr Johnson in Year 12 legal studies, who met with me one-on-one every week to make sure I understood everything. I got a study score of 40 and was so glad to be able to repay his commitment.
I now want to help others and to work in the legal justice system, maybe with victims of crime, and also to mentor people with deafness, because not a lot of deaf students had the same access to funding and the same experience as me.
I know I wouldn’t be where I am without Avila.
Among other things the CEOM is now to be identified
as the lead agency for delivery of the school irrespective of the status of
ownership of the land within approved PSPs incorporated into the relevant
planning schemes affording recognition of the role of Catholic schools in education
A renewed Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) was
signed between the CEOM and the MPA, which provides the terms of reference for
including the CEOM as a stakeholder in the planning and development of new
areas, ensuring that demand for Catholic schools is met into the future.
New Schools and Closures
One primary school opened in the Archdiocese in
2014 – St Mary of the Cross, located in Point Cook in the parish of Laverton,
with an enrolment of 152. This school received a commendation for Education Initiative
or Design Solution for an Innovative Program at the 2014 CEFPI Victorian Chapter Awards, announced in November 2014.
Additionally, a recent school opened in 2010, Our Lady of the Southern Cross, Wyndham
Vale, won the category of Entire New Facility at the same awards ceremony.
Three new primary schools were planned for 2015; these include, St Clare's Catholic School, Truganina; St John the Apostle
Catholic Primary School, Tarneit; and St Paul the Apostle, Doreen. Construction
for all three schools commenced in early 2014.
The 'beehive' at St Mary of the Cross, Point Cook, was commended for its design.
Each of the local steering
committees has been actively engaged in marketing initiatives to assist in
building community relationships.
There were no school closures in 2014.
Support for schools in enrolment decline
With the support of the parish priest, a Working
Party was established in 2013 to investigate the underlying reasons for the
continued decline in enrolments at St Stephen’s School, Reservoir East, which
had reached a critical point, and develop and implement strategies to grow
A renewal strategy was developed to support
enrolment growth over a three-year period. In addition to school staff,
families and the local community, professional advice and assistance was called
upon from various departments across the organisation, including the Northern
Regional Office, Planning, Infrastructure & Capital Funding, Marketing &
Communications, Wellbeing & Community Partnerships, and Finance.
Among many achievements, the major outcomes for
The Office will continue to monitor the enrolment
situation of the school over the next couple of years.
Archdiocesan Enrolment Committee
The Archdiocesan Enrolment Committee (AEC) serves
to advise the Executive Director on enrolment matters in the Archdiocese of
Melbourne. Many of the issues discussed and assessed are related to Catholic
Recurring matters that come across the Committee
include complaints of schools enrolling prospective students outside their
designated priority parishes (or catchment area) or schools wishing to increase
their Year 7 ceiling level to take on more students.
The Archdiocesan Enrolment Policy seeks cooperation
and collaboration between schools in their efforts to source students from
their rightful catchment area. This is necessary to ensure the viability of our
schools but in practice is much more complex to administer.
That said, in recent years, with the reduced number
of complaints and correspondence received by the Office, it would appear that
schools are increasingly observing this protocol. It is important for school
leaders to acknowledge that they are part of a broader system that encourages
enrolment growth, but not at the expense of other Catholic schools.
School–Community Partnerships and Community Hubs
The completion of the School–Community Partnerships
policy paper for consideration by the Executive Director occurred in 2014. A
draft paper was developed in 2013 by Professor Loretta Giorcelli, the Planning Unit
finalised the paper following a workshop with Dr George Otero in March. The
paper highlights the importance of placing Catholic schools within community
hubs at the heart of community facilities, following the direction that the CEOM
policy on Schools as Core Social Centres has set.
In particular, it recognises the importance of
early learning centres in this association of Catholic schools and community.
Learning spaces at newly built St John the Apostle Catholic Primary School in Tarneit
This follows the initiatives taken by St Mark’s School in Fawkner and St
Francis of Assisi School in Mill Park in building kindergartens onsite or
taking over the operation of one already adjacent to the school. Further work
on this aspect will be taken up in 2015 as part of the implementation of the
Archdiocesan Strategic Plan 2015–2018.
The policy of placing new schools in community hubs
in new PSPs in growth corridors prompted the study of five existing
partnerships between schools and community facilities. The purpose was to
assess the levels of success of some of the examples of co-located Catholic
schools, government schools and community facilities. This took place at the latter
half of 2014, with the cooperation of the schools, the Department of Education
and Training (DET) and the MPA. Outcomes of the study will be used to guide the
establishment of any new community hubs in the Archdiocese.
Construction on St Paul the Apostle, Doreen, began in June 2014.
Login to CEVN