From our commencement, the Emmaus community explored options to the traditional “School Board” / “Parents and Friends” models of parental involvement in schools. Our endeavour has been to try to find a mechanism that allows for genuine consultation within our community whilst also meeting requirements with system authorities who have been keen to see us adopt a “School Board / Advisory Council” model of parent engagement.
The reasoning behind the system authorities thinking this is sound. It is vitally important that parents are given a voice in the future directions of their childrenʼs schools and we at Emmaus are no exception. However, given our status as a new school, it would have been unfortunate to think that we couldnʼt expend time, energy and creativity to explore alternative models that allow for parents and community members of the Emmaus community to feel a genuine sense of ownership in their school.
Our “Community Leadership Team” is comprised of two representatives from each of the six ʻarmsʼ noted below. These ʻarmsʼ were arrived at after a period of consultation during which parents came to the conclusion that there were six key areas that we needed to develop if we are to achieve our potential as a Catholic school community. The six arms are not set in concrete and could and do change over time as our model evolves. When we gather on the second Tuesday of each month we do so in the knowledge that there are brief reports from each of the arms noted along with a variety of other ʻgeneral businessʼ matters. In listening to one another we are informed of all that is taking place in school life whilst clarifying future directions needing to be taken.
It is worth noting that like any Catholic “School Advisory Council / Board,” the Emmaus Community Leadership Team is not a decision making body. The community team is a vital sounding board to inform decision making in our school. This responsibility in Catholic schools rests with the Principal.
The twelve parents who represent the six arms of the Community Leadership Team (two from each arm) gather each month with one / both of our school Governors, Sister Mary Nuttall and Father Peter Sherman, staff representatives (rotating seats), the Principal and student representatives when appropriate.
In the beginning the “Community Team” model of parent involvement at Emmaus we have also been conscious of the reality that regular, monthly ʻcommunity meetingsʼ served our community very well over the course of the first two and a half years of our existence. Thus, we have decided that our monthly Community Leadership Team meetings should be ‘open’ to all interested parents. Thus, all in the Emmaus community who wish to attend these meetings have a sense of all that is taking place in school life.
All parents at Emmaus will be able to offer their services to the Community Leadership Team as seats will change every second year. Our aim will be for one representative from each of the six arms to resign their position at the end of their second year so that six new parents can take their seats.
2018 COMMUNITY LEADERSHIP TEAM MEMBERS:-
Chairperson/s: Shell Corcoran
Secretary: Kate Weadon
Claire McAteer, Lisa Reeve & Vikki Woodburn
Elizabeth Allan, Melissa Prichard & Renae McCarty-Ferguson
Canteen | Emma Irvin & Regina Kaye
Kate Weadon & Lauren Rendell
GROUNDS & DEVELOPMENT
Jen Kelynack & Andrew Edmondston
Danielle Duggan, Shell Corcoran & Sam Gent
WELFARE & WELLBEING
Rebecca Wright & Rachel Wallbank