College boards are established in most Catholic colleges. College boards bring together priests, members of religious orders, principals and parents and friends of the college in a spirit of collaboration to realise the college’s vision and achieve its educational aims. The boards are established under various governance models and vary in responsibility and function, from advisory boards, incorporated boards or boards of management. Membership is defined in the board constitution.
‘In schools… families have a most important place and role. Catholic schools appreciate their value, and promote their participation in the school, where they can assume various forms of co-responsibility’.
(Congregation for Catholic Education 2013)
Procedures and processes for parent representation on college boards are available through the Principal’s Office.
Parents and friends associations
Most schools have a parents’ association, often called the Parents and Friends Association or a Parents Auxiliary. These groups offer an opportunity for parents to gather and become involved in the life of the school. These groups take many forms and provide support for the school in areas such as:
maintenance of grounds, buildings and equipment
fundraising for particular needs in the school
voluntary support for educational programs.
Parent groups can also assist in fostering the intellectual, cultural, social and spiritual interests of their members, and provide opportunities for the development of community spirit among the staff and parents.
Catholic schools and Catholic Education Offices are committed to developing and maintaining opportunities for parent and community participation in the education of their children.
Victorian Catholic Schools Parent Body (VCSPB)
The Victorian Catholic Schools Parent Body (VCSPB) was established in October 2005. Its role is to:
provide a forum to represent parents in Victorian Catholic schools
promote parents as partners in education with the school, the Church and the community
promote the principles of Catholic education in collaboration with the diocesan Bishops
promote Catholic schools as schools of first choice for Catholic families.
The VCSPB provides an avenue for parents to participate at diocesan, state and national levels, advocates for Catholic school communities, and represents parents of students in Catholic schools through their school boards or parent associations. Each diocese has a representative on the VCSPB who ensures that school boards are informed about state issues.