As you will be aware, the State Government has invited public schools over the past several years to apply to become ‘Independent Public Schools’ (IPS) with a view to giving these schools greater autonomy, responsibility, and the flexibility to respond to the particular needs of their communities. Information about IPS is available at http://www.education.wa.edu.au/home/detcms/navigation/about-us/programs-and-initiatives/independent-public-schools/
In 2013 NPPS embarked on the IPS Development Process but withdrew in early 2014 as it became clear to School Council that we would not be able to proceed to IPS until we had developed a shared vision for the school. Staff, parents and students participated in a collaborative visioning process in 2014 and by the end of the year we were able to unveil our new school vision, Inspiring young minds, creating possibilities. This vision is underpinned by our core values, Inclusivity, Respect, Resilience and Responsibility, and we have recently developed a new Code of Conduct which spells out how we as a school community will demonstrate these values as we work towards our vision.
In 2015 there has been no call for applications for IPS, and the Department of Education has no current plans for a new intake. School Council has written to the Minister for Education, the Honourable Peter Collier, and to Peter Titmanis, Executive Director of Innovation, Performance and Research at the Department of Education to propose that schools be permitted to apply for IPS when they feel they are ready to do so, independent of any formal intake round. We hope to receive a positive response to our proposal for a more flexible process, but will not move forward with any application until we have consulted with the NPPS community as to whether it feels IPS would be appropriate for our school and would help us to achieve our vision. To this end, we will conduct a short online survey by the middle of this term. The survey will also cover some other operational priorities for 2016. Please look out for the survey and have your say.