Release type: Media Release


Greater powers for principals and school communities in 32 WA schools


Senator the Hon Chris Evans
Acting Minister for School Education, Early Childhood and Youth
Senator for Western Australia

Thirty-two schools in Western Australia will have greater autonomy thanks to more than $2.1 million in funding from the Gillard Government.
The funding is part of the Government’s commitment of almost $64 million over the next two years for the Empowering Local Schools initiative, which is being rolled out across up to 1000 schools nationally from this year.

Acting Minister for School Education, Senator Chris Evans, today announced the 32 Western Australian Catholic and independent schools set to take part in the scheme.

“These non-government schools are now benefiting from more decision making power, including greater control over school budgets, staffing and governance,” Senator Evans said.

“WA Premier Colin Barnett decided not to take advantage of more than $5 million in available funding for government schools and he will need to explain this decision to parents and teachers of government school students.

“Every other state and territory has agreed to take part in our Empowering Local Schools initiative because they know it will improve student results and support local schools to make more effective decisions and reduce the bureaucratic burden on schools.”

The Catholic Education Office of WA will use the funding to work on two projects:

  • Refining the Current Model of School Board Governance—will help more parents to get involved in school decision-making by improving the current practices of School Boards, and
  • Management of Financial Resources and Infrastructure in Primary and New Schools—will help schools employ a Business Manager to work with several primary schools to improve their financial management processes and decision making.

Independent schools participating in the initiative will be able to pursue activities in areas such as the management of school finances and budgets, infrastructure planning, school leadership and parental and community engagement.

Each participating school will receive a start-up grant of between $40,000 and $50,000 to help them manage their increased decision-making responsibilities.

This will see the Gillard Government providing WA with more than $800,000 in grants to the participating Catholic schools and more than $700,000 in grants for independent schools.

Funding will also be provided for targeted training and professional development for principals and school communities, with more than $59,000 allocated for Catholic schools and more than $52,000 for independent schools.

A full list of participating WA schools is included below.

More information is available at:

Participating schools in WA

  • Nagle Catholic College, Geraldton
  • Bunbury Catholic College, Bunbury
  • St Norbert College, Queens Park
  • Mater Dei College, Edgewater
  • Mary's Mount Primary School, Gooseberry Hill
  • Sacred Heart Catholic School, Goomalling
  • St Joseph's School, Northam
  • Assumption Catholic Primary School, Mandurah
  • Hammond Park Catholic School, Hammond Park
  • Orana Catholic Primary School, Willetton
  • St Helena's Catholic Primary School, Ellenbrook
  • Holy Cross College, Ellenbrook
  • St Gerard's Primary School, Westminster
  • St Columba's School, Bayswater
  • St Augustine's School, Rivervale
  • St Lawrence's Primary School, Bluff Point
  • Our Lady of Mount Carmel School, Mullewa
  • Carmel Adventist College, Carmel
  • Golden Hill Steiner School, Denmark
  • Goldfields Baptist College, Kalgoorlie
  • Hillside Christian School, Forrestfield
  • Kerry Street Community School, Hamilton Hill
  • Lake Joondalup Baptist College, Joondalup
  • Leaning Tree Community School, Geraldton
  • Living Waters Lutheran College, Rockingham
  • Margaret River Independent School, Forest Grove
  • Margaret River Montessori School, Margaret River
  • Ocean Forest Lutheran College, Gelorup
  • Peter Carnley Anglican Community, Kwinana
  • Purnululu Aboriginal Independent, Kununurra
  • Rawa Com Sch Aboriginal Corp, Newman
  • Sowilo Community High School, Kelmscott