Last week on Thursday 17 November the P&C Federation co-hosted a Webinar with School Infrastructure NSW regarding the change to tender policy on NSW Public Schools. You can watch this webinar here.
This week Network has been fielding questions and queries from our members regarding the two new announcements – namely, the grant for services that have completed the transition, and the template sale of assets document.
School Infrastructure NSW (Department of Education) promised OOSH Services a guide or ‘step plan’ to support them through the transition. Instead, OOSHs have received a very small component of the process (that is, the template Asset Sale Agreement) relevant only in the final stages. The bulk of the work will still need to be completed by professionals, at great cost to OOSH Services.
Network has heard your frustration loud and clear. In lieu of School Infrastructure (Department of Education) doing what they promised, Network will step in to support you.
In 2023 Network will release documents and support plans to assist you. At this stage, we strongly encourage OOSH services not to take active steps to commence transition. If you have any concerns about your individual situation please contact us for tailored support on 9212 3244.
This grant is backtracking on the commitment made by School Infrastructure to provide funding for the OOSH Services impacted to cover costs of the transition.
This grant that is materially flawed:
a) The grant is for those services that have already “transitioned”. This grant does not support those services that are most in need of financial support to navigate the process. Instead, only P&Cs will be eligible to receive the grant money after those Services that could already afford to move to the P&C model have funded the process.
b) The limited pool of funding that will be assessed “in order of receipt” places an artificial timeframe and unreasonable sense of urgency for OOSHs and P&Cs to navigate a change that, by virtue of its complexities and risks, should not be rushed.
c) This grant provides a maximum of $10,000 per service that has completed the transition. By virtue of the fact that an OOSH will close down after transition, this grant is only open to P&Cs (who will be the new provider following the transition). $10,000 will not cover the costs associated with the required professional advice nor wind-up of the OOSH.
d) There are approximately 146 parent-managed OOSHs. This grant does not even cover 1/3 of the impacted Services.
Families have paid fees to their Not-for-Profit OOSH Services with the expectation that those fees would be spent on things that benefit their children (such as resources, activities and quality staff). Instead, by failing to adequately fund the transition process the Department of Education is ripping away money from parents and children to fund a complicated legal processes.
Network is here to support you through the changes ahead. We know you’re exhausted, burned out, and trying to support not only children and families, but the volunteers who manage your OOSHs. Our advice to you is do not act now. You have time, and Network is advocating strongly behind the scenes to secure better outcomes for you as an individual Service and for the OOSH Sector as a whole. Whatever happens. we will be here to help you.
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November 9, 2023 - Advocacy
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