Calls for regional voice on state P&C federation

The state government wants to re-establish the NSW Federation of Parents and Citizens Associations

The state government wants to re-establish the NSW Federation of Parents and Citizens Associations

THE state government wants to re-establish the NSW Federation of Parents and Citizens Associations after it was disbanded in May, but one Orange P&C president believes regional voices will once again not be represented. 

Nominations have opened for the election of a new state federation for schools’ parents and citizens associations.

It comes after Education Minister Adrian Piccoli took the extraordinary step of introducing legislation to dissolve the federation in May, saying he had been given no choice after continued “warring” within the group.

Mr Piccoli is encouraging regional P&C members to put their hands up to join the state division. 

However, Canobolas Public School P&C president Melissa Caulfield said the federation would never fairly represent regional schools while all the meetings were held in metropolitan areas.

“I have one child in high school, one in primary school and one about to start kindy, I can’t just pack up and leave for days on end to go to these meetings,” she said. 

“For me it’s absolutely impossible.”

Mrs Caulfield questioned the effectiveness of the state division because she had received little support from the federation and the region’s P&Cs have had to cope without it.

She said it was more helpful for finding cheaper insurance deals for fundraising events, but other than that, she saw little point in re-establishing the organisation.

“We hadn’t experienced much in the support side of things for at least the last six months and as the P&C president of a regional school, we just get on and do it on our own,” she said. 

Nominations for councillors and delegates for the reformed federation are open until August 29.

One councillor and two delegates will be elected from each of the 16 new regions established under the legislation introduced by Mr Piccoli in May.

Once a new governing body is elected, it will select a seven-member executive committee to be responsible for the day-to-day running of the federation.

Member for Orange Andrew Gee said this was a great opportunity for parents and carers of students at public schools in the Orange electorate to get involved. 

nicole.kuter@fairfaxmedia.com.au

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