The forum — held in Melbourne with guest-speaker Steve Munby — set out the basis for the network’s reformation, with participants brainstorming ideas around structure, purpose and function.
Among the proposals was the creation of an annual two-day conference involving principals from each participating school.
Second to that was the establishment of a P-12 Reference Group, to be lead by Damien Keel from Yarrawonga College P-12, and Jean Olley from Bright P-12, to oversee its ongoing operation.
Mr Keel said the forum was gratifying.
“I took from it a great deal of positivity and optimism – it was very proactive for all involved,” he said.
“It was very evident that we each had similar views, thoughts and concerns and you could tell, through the conversations, that we were all on the same page.
“(Through this network) I am most looking forward to being able to talk to people in contexts that are similar to my own — and that we can unify a healthy group of P-12 schools so that together we can be influential and provide valuable feedback to the Department (of Education).”
CEP Project Officer Kate Roache said the forum was the perfect platform to create discussion between schools about what they need in a state network.
“Looking around the room, there certainly was a sense that the forum had established a good foundation from which we could continue to build,” she said.
“Initiatives like this really are critical because they enable principals to expand their connections with colleagues who are experiencing similar successes and similar challenges working in a P-12 setting .
“And that’s what this is all about — creating the links, creating the fellowship — so that P-12 schools can work together to be better together.”
Thirteen schools were represented at the forum, with discussions also held around co-operative subject provision, teacher exchange programs and university partnerships to increase pre-service teaching placements in rural schools.
P-12 Network Member Schools who Attended the Forum
Murrayville Community College
Lake Bolac P-12
Apollo Bay P-12
Merinda Central P-12
East Loddon P-12