education.vic.gov.au

School operations

School Council — Meetings

Policy

This policy outlines requirements and good practice in relation to school council meetings.

Summary

  • School council meetings must be conducted according to legislative requirements as set out in this policy and guidance material.
  • School council meetings must be held at least 8 times per year, at least once each term, and achieve a quorum for a meeting to proceed.
  • School council members may be present at a meeting in person or by videoconference or teleconference.
  • It is good practice to establish Standing Orders to assist in the effective and efficient operation of meetings.
  • School councils must hold a public reporting meeting at least once a year.
  • Further, more detailed information on the requirements and conduct of school council meetings is available in the Guidance tab.

Details

School council meetings must:

  • be held at least 8 times per year (unless the Minister has approved less meetings) and at least once per school term (there is no maximum number of meetings)
  • achieve a quorum for a meeting to proceed (a quorum is achieved at a school council meeting when not less than one half of the school council members are present, and the majority are not department employees)
  • be attended by members of the school council in person or if unable to attend personally, by videoconferencing or teleconferencing
  • be conducted in accordance with the school council’s Standing Orders if the school council has established any. Further information is available in the Guidance tab.
  • be resourced with support and relevant information by the principal, for the efficient conduct of meetings
  • be open to members of the school community, unless the council determines the need for a closed meeting or a closed component of the meeting.

School council must keep records of decisions made at council meetings and resulting actions required and completed.

School council meetings must be chaired by:

  • the president of the school council, other than the meetings to appoint community members and elect office bearers, which are conducted by the principal as executive officer, or
  • the vice-president, if the president is unable to preside. If the school council has appointed a vice-president and they are in attendance, the vice-president must preside, or
  • a member of the council (other than a member who is a department employee), if the president is unable to preside and if the school council has not appointed a vice-president, or the vice-president is unable to preside at the meeting. The school council must vote on who will preside at the meeting, or
  • the school principal, if the school council by resolution removes the president from office. The principal will chair the meeting to fill the position of president.

School council must:

  • call a public reporting meeting at least once a year to:
    • report council proceedings (key activities and achievements)
    • present the annual report
    • present a copy of the audited accounts, if the accounts have been audited.

School council office bearer positions

The positions of president and executive officer are mandated positions on council. The principal is automatically the executive officer of the school council.

The president is elected by all council members at the first meeting of the new school council. The president is a parent or community member and chairs meetings. The council may also elect other non-mandatory officer bearers (such as a treasurer) at the first or any following meetings.

A department employee is ineligible to serve as president, or vice-president, if the council choose to elect one. The school business manager is ineligible to serve as treasurer.

Further information on school council office bearers is available at School Council — Composition and Office Bearers.

Definitions

Quorum
A quorum is achieved at a school council meeting when not less than one half of the school council members currently on council are present, and the majority are not department employees.

Relevant legislation

Department policy outlining requirements and good practice in relation to school council meetings

Reviewed 14 December 2022

Policy last updated

11 January 2022

Scope

  • Schools
  • School councils

Contact

School Operations and Governance Unit

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