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School Chaplaincy Programme: Reference Group appointed.

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Media Release

School Chaplaincy Programme -Reference Group Appointed

28 November 2006

The Minister for Education, Science and Training the Hon Julie Bishop MP, today announced that a Reference Group for the National School Chaplaincy Programme has been appointed.

“School chaplains are already making valuable contributions within school communities nationally, and the Prime Minister recently announced that the Australian Government will invest up to $30 million annually for three years, to make these vital services available to all schools,” Minister Bishop said.

“The Group will provide the Government with advice on the diverse needs of school communities in relation to pastoral care, student wellbeing and spiritual development.

“I congratulate the members of the Reference Group who will provide expert advice to the Government on the implementation of the Programme. The members come from different school sectors, parent and chaplaincy organisations. They will hold their first meeting in the near future.

“I look forward to the contribution this key Group will make to ensure the effective implementation of the National School Chaplaincy Programme in our schools. Their cumulative expertise will be valuable in ensuring the Programme responds to the varied needs of school communities.

“Participation in the Programme is voluntary and it is up to schools to determine whether they wish to be involved, in consultation with and with the support of the broader school community, particularly parents”.

The programme guidelines will be released during December and schools will be able to submit funding applications early in 2007.

Further information on the Chaplaincy initiative is available at: or by phoning 1300 363 079.

A list of Reference Group members is attached.

Media Contacts: Minister Bishop’s Office: Murray Hansen 0417 886 155

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Dept of Education, Science & Training: Media Unit 02 6240 7300 Non-media queries 1300 363 079


National School Chaplaincy Programme Reference Group

Mrs Jennifer Branch, President of the National Executive of the Australian Council of State School Organisations (ACSSO)

Mr Neil Brown, Chairman of the Catholic Education Commission of Victoria

Mr Bill Daniels, Executive Director of the Independent Schools Council of Australia (ISCA)

Mr Ian Rockman, Chairman of the Australian Coordinating Committee of Jewish Day Schools

Mr Abdul Rahman Najmeddine, President of the Australian Council for Islamic Education in Schools

Mr Stanley Jeyaraj, Executive Director of the Churches’ Commission on Education Inc./YouthCARE and State Manager for Kids Helpline

Mr Tim Mander, Chief Executive Officer of Scripture Union Queensland

Mr Haydn Lush, Director of SA Schools Ministry Group

Mr Bill Burmester, Deputy Secretary, Department of Education, Science and Training

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