Posts in category News

Connect with Your Children over ABC’s Short & Curly

In an age where we are more connected than ever through and with technology, it’s important that families leverage it to learn, laugh and have fun together.

If you’ve resolved to try new ways to engage with your children in 2018, a good start is finding something you can both enjoy.

The ABC’s Short & Curly is a podcast designed to get children and families thinking and brainstorming together.

According to the ABC, Short & Curly is a “fast-paced fun-filled ethics podcast for kids and their parents, with questions and ideas to really get you thinking. It asks curly questions about animals, technology, school, pop culture and the future”.

One of the latest episodes proposes the following scenario: “An out-of-control train is heading straight for a group of people who don’t know they are about to be hit.  You, as the driver, have some life and death decisions to make.  What will you do?”

The podcast is presented by Carl Smith – a science enthusiast and ABC reporter working for Radio National and ABC Science: Molly Daniels – an Australian actress, film maker and podcaster; and Matt Beard – from the Ethics Centre, who is the program’s resident philosopher.

Check out the latest episodes of Short & Curly with your children << Link


Bookmark this Free 1 March Parent Webinar

It’s Time We Talked Again: Pornography, Young People and Sexuality Today

Online pornography has been described as the “underbelly” of the internet and it’s a subject parents need to both understand and discuss openly and honestly with their children.

A recent Australian parliamentary inquiry into the potential harm children and young people are experiencing as a result of their exposure to online pornography is sobering reading.

According to the report of the Senate Standing Committee on Environment and Communications, young people who haven’t seen online pornography are an exception to what is becoming a new normal.

In this free webinar for parents, expert on young people and sexuality Maree Crabbe, who produced and co-directed documentaries, Love & Sex in an Age of Pornography and The Porn Factor,  will share her expertise, advice and insights on:

  • what parents need to understand about porn and its influence on young people’s sexual understandings and expectations
  • how parents can support their children’s healthy social and sexual development in an age of pornography.

When: 1 March 2018, 8.15pm

Where: Parents do not need to register – just copy and paste this link into your browser on the night –

More information:


New Independent Schools and Services Opening in 2018

Community demand for bespoke learning is fuelling growth in Queensland’s independent schooling sector with six new schools approved to open in 2018.

Among the new independent schools opening their doors for the first time is Maleny Independent School, located in the Sunshine Coast hinterland, which will offer Years 7 and 8 this year.

Three new schools dedicated to breaking down barriers and re-engaging young people in education are also scheduled to open in Brisbane’s south and Emerald in 2018.

In Term 2, Josiah College – a specialist school for children with Autism Spectrum Disorder – is scheduled to open on the Gold Coast with about 16 primary-age students.

Two existing independent schools in the Mackay and Townsville regions will also expand their education provision into high school.

The new and expanded schools (see full list below) will bring the total number of independent schools in Queensland to 208. These schools will operate across more than 230 sites.

More than 120,000 students are expected to enrol in Queensland independent schools in 2018.

Independent Schools Queensland (ISQ) Executive Director David Robertson said parent demand for tailored education services for children with specific needs was fuelling growth of smaller specialist schools in the independent sector.

“Some parents go to extraordinary lengths to seek out schools or support the establishment of new independent schools they believe will best meet the education and social needs of their children,” he said.

Mr Robertson said the fastest growing school type in the independent sector was Special Assistance Schools.

“Special Assistance Schools support young people, many of whom have experienced deep trauma or disadvantage during their lives, to re-engage in learning and complete their education,” he said.

“These schools have expanded at a rapid rate in the independent sector, with students and local communities embracing their supportive and integrated approach to student welfare and learning.”

“The scheduled opening of three new independent Special Assistance Schools in Emerald and Brisbane’s southern suburbs this year will bring the number of school sites offering this education service in the independent sector to 24.”

Queensland Independent Schools Parents Network Executive Officer Sue Kloeden encouraged Queensland parents to discover and learn more about their local independent schools.

“There’s a broad range of education options available in the independent schooling sector. Parents can choose from faith-based schools, to ones grounded in a particular educational philosophy. There are also specialist schools with expert staff in VET and reconnecting disengaged students, as well as schools with tailored education programs for children with autism or language disorders,” Ms Kloeden said.

“Independent schools offer a wide range of assistance to new parents, such as practical back-to-school advice to help ease their child’s transition into a new school environment, as well as important reminders to parents of returning students about how to re-establish positive school routines and good learning habits,” she said.

“Many also run a range of parent information sessions during the year on topics such as student wellbeing and cyber safety.”

The QIS Parents Network website contains a range of practical advice for parents about how they can support their child’s transition to school and the role they can play in the learning success of their children during their school years.

Listed below are the new independent schools and extended services approved by the Non-State Schools Accreditation Board.

New independent schools due to open in 2018:

NOTE: New schools and extended schooling services have been approved to open with anticipated start dates. Parents or community members should contact the schools directly to confirm their enrolment intakes, processes and school opening dates.

Maleny Independent School, Maleny (Sunshine Coast Hinterland)

Designed to be a high school offering a holistic, child-centred approach to education, Maleny Independent School will cater for Years 7 and 8 in Term 1, 2018 and expand to Year 9 in 2019 and Year 10 in 2020.

Redwood College, Burpengary (North of Brisbane)

An independent school in the Moreton Bay region, north of Brisbane, Redwood College has been approved as a Prep-Year 12 school with a distance education service. The school’s distance education service is currently taking enrolments. An opening date for the day school is yet to be confirmed.

Josiah College, Carrara (Gold Coast)

The school is a specialist independent school for children with Autism Spectrum Disorder. The state-of-the-art school is currently under construction at Carrara on the Gold Coast. It is expected to open in Term 2, 2018 with 16 students in Years 2-5, but is forecast to expand its offerings to 64 students in Years 2-10 in the future.

YMCA Vocational School, Acacia Ridge (Southern Brisbane)

YMCA is due to open its fifth Special Assistance School in 2018. The school, located in Acacia Ridge, in Brisbane’s south, has been approved to provide education services to high school-age students who have disengaged from mainstream schooling. The school is due to commence in Term 1 with students in Years 10-12.

The Spot Academy, Parkinson (Southern Brisbane)

The Spot Academy is a Special Assistance School for young people who have disengaged or are at risk of disengaging from education. The school, located in Brisbane’s southern suburbs, is accepting enrolments in Years 7-9 and will open in Term 1, 2018.

 Ontrack, Emerald

Emerald Christian College has been approved to open a Special Assistance School called Ontrack, for students from Years 5-10 who have disengaged from mainstream education. The school is expected to enrol about 20 students in 2018 at the PCYC. However it’s estimated between 80 and 100 local students would benefit from the school’s integrated education and welfare support to get them “back on track”.

 Existing independent schools that are extending their education provision in 2018:

 Carlisle Adventist Christian College, Beaconsfield (Mackay Region)

The school will offer Year 11 for the first time in 2018 with Year 12 following in 2019. A range of building works are underway to accommodate the growing school, which is expected to start the school year with more than 200 students in Prep-Year 11. New facilities due to be completed in early 2018 include a new library, a science classroom, experimental lab and staff room. Further buildings, including a new hospitality centre and extra classrooms, will be constructed during 2018.

Townsville Christian College, (Townsville)

The existing Prep-Year 6 school has been approved to extend into high school, into Years 7-9, for the first time in 2018.


One More Sleep Until Year 12 Final Results Released

The wait is almost over for more than 50,000 Queensland school graduates who will tomorrow (Saturday 16 Dec) receive their eagerly anticipated Year 12 results.

The Queensland Curriculum and Assessment Authority (QCAA) will publish individual results in student online learning accounts from 9am Saturday.

Independent Schools Queensland Executive Director David Robertson wished all school leavers every success for the future, particularly the 11,000 graduates from independent schools.

“Tonight may be a sleepless night for some students who have a clear goal about the course they want to study and the results they need to make that happen,” Mr Robertson said.

“About half the graduating seniors will receive a Tertiary Entrance Statement, which includes their Overall Position (OP) score – a key gateway to the tertiary course of their choice,” he said.

“Whatever the results, it’s important students remember there are many paths to success.”

“They have time on their side to study, train and work in a range of different fields before finding their passion. Being flexible and enterprising are two skills in demand by employers in today’s mobile gig economy.”

Queensland Independent Schools Parents Network Executive Officer Sue Kloeden said many parents and carers would also be holding their breath as their sons and daughters logged on to get their results.

“Whether students experience relief, excitement or disappointment, Queensland parents will be there to support them as they have throughout their entire schooling lives,” Ms Kloeden said.

According to Mr Robertson, the graduates of 2017 can take heart from the findings of annual surveys examining the study and work destinations of Queensland Year 12s.

“The good news is the majority of Queensland school leavers are either in education, training or employment (86 percent) six months after finishing school, according to the results of the latest Next Step survey,” he said.

“Studying for a Bachelor Degree remains the most popular destination, accounting for 39.3% of Year 12 graduates who finished school in 2016, followed by full or part-time employment (27.4%) and vocational education and training (19.5%).”

“Instead of launching straight into their chosen degree, some school leavers choose to travel and work, undertake a shorter course of study or take a break. According to the survey 1 in 10 graduates from 2016 deferred their university course or were waiting for a course to begin.”

New Qld Education Minister Takes the Helm

Independent schools today welcomed the appointment of Grace Grace as Queensland’s new Education Minister and Brittany Lauga as Assistant Minister for Education.

Independent Schools Queensland (ISQ) and the Queensland Independent Schools Parents Network (QISPN) congratulated Ms Grace on being named Minister for Education and Minister for Industrial Relations in a second-term Palaszczuk Government.

“Education is a critical area of public policy that directly impacts the lives of 800,000 school-age children and their families and contributes to the future prosperity of the state,” ISQ Executive Director David Robertson said.

“Independent schools look forward to working collaboratively with the Minister on progressing existing changes, such as the new senior assessment and tertiary entrance systems, as well as mapping out the next stage in Queensland’s education reform agenda,” Mr Robertson said.

QISPN Executive Officer Sue Kloeden thanked the Palaszczuk Government for supporting parents to become more engaged in the education of their children.

Mr Robertson and Ms Kloeden congratulated former Education Minister Kate Jones on her new portfolio responsibilities and thanked her for her leadership on school education matters at the state and federal levels.

Mr Robertson and Ms Kloeden praised Ms Jones’ consultative approach to education reform and her genuine support for independent schools.

“The Education Minister is the Minister for all schools. This was a title Ms Jones actively lived in her day-to-day work,” they said.

“We look forward to continuing this valuable and productive partnership with our new Education Minister.”

“We also look forward to engaging with the new Assistant Minister for Education.”

QISPN Looks Forward to Working in Partnership with Palaszczuk Govt

Independent Schools Queensland (ISQ) and the Queensland Independent Schools Parents Network (QISPN) today congratulated the Palaszczuk Government on securing a second term in office.

ISQ Executive Director David Robertson welcomed the Labor Government’s commitments to school education during the election campaign and its ongoing support for school choice and the non-state schooling sectors.

“Education reform takes time and commitment. The Palaszczuk Government is progressing important changes in school education, such as modernising Queensland’s senior assessment and tertiary entrance systems. It also recently updated the legislation that regulates and enables non-state schools,” Mr Robertson said.

“The Palaszczuk Government will now be able to see these and other changes through in partnership with all Queensland schools,” he said.

“Stability and certainty at the political level is important to setting and delivering a visionary, evidence-based long-term education policy agenda.”

QISPN Executive Officer Sue Kloeden welcomed the Palaszczuk Government’s ongoing commitment to supporting parent engagement in school education.

“More than 40 years of research has shown that the children of parents who take an active interest in their education do better at school, have a positive attitude towards learning and greater self-esteem,” Ms Kloeden said.

ISQ, QISPN and independent schools look forward to continuing to work collaboratively with the Queensland Government and the state and Catholic schooling sectors on delivering improved services and outcomes for all students and their families.

Mr Robertson and Ms Kloeden said both organisations also looked forward to working with the Education Minister once the government confirms its ministry for the 56th Parliament.

Year 12 Results Reminder

Year 12s may have finished school, but their results aren’t in yet.

To ensure they can access their marks online, the Queensland Curriculum and Assessment Authority (QCAA) is reminding students to make sure they have their account log-in details before schools finish for the year.

Final results and OPs will be available in student learning accounts from 9am on Saturday 16 December 2017 on the QCAA Student Connect website.

Students need their 10-digit Learner Unique Identifier (LUI) and password to log into their learning account and access their results online.

If students don’t know their LUI, they should ask their school for it. Schools will be closed when results are released, so it is important that students find out their LUI before the end of term.

Hard copy results will be posted to students on Friday 15 December.

Students can expect to receive their Senior Education Profile in the mail from Monday 18 December. Depending on students’ individual circumstances, this may include a Queensland Certificate of Education (QCE), Tertiary Entrance Statement, Senior Statement or Queensland Certificate of Individual Achievement (QCIA).

Class of 2017 Set to Graduate

Tomorrow (Friday, 17 November) marks the final day of school for more than 53,000 Year 12 students.

Independent Schools Queensland Executive Director David Robertson wished the graduating class of 2017 well in their future endeavours, particularly the 11,000 Year 12s from independent schools.

Mr Robertson also thanked the principals, teachers, school staff and families who supported the Year 12s in reaching this major life milestone.

“Many students will finish school with a very clear idea about their next steps. This could be undertaking further study, training or working. However, other students may take a gap year to work and travel before deciding on their next move,” he said.

“We know the employment marketplace and skillsets favoured by employers are evolving. Data shows the gig economy and job mobility are on the rise in Australia with today’s young people expected to experience five careers and 17 job changes during their working lives.

“The good news is successive surveys of Queensland Year 12 graduates confirm the majority of school leavers are either in education, training or employment (86 percent) six months after finishing school, according to the results of the latest Next Step survey.

“Studying for a Bachelor Degree remains the most popular destination, accounting for 39.3% of Year 12 graduates who finished school in 2016, followed by full or part-time employment (27.3%) and vocational education and training (19.4%).”

Queensland Independent Schools Parents Network Executive Officer Sue Kloeden extended her congratulations to the graduating seniors on their achievements.

“Students should be proud of the effort they’ve put in, not just in this final year, but over their entire schooling lives,” Ms Kloeden said.

“It’s also important that we recognise the support crews – families, carers and school staff – who’ve been with these students every step of the way encouraging them to strive to do their best.”

Eligible Year 12s can now access their individual Queensland Core Skills (QCS) Test grades, A to E, from their learning accounts, according to the Queensland Curriculum and Assessment Authority.

All students will be able to access their final senior results, including Overall Position (OP) scores, online from 16 December.

Students must ensure they have their 10-digit Learner Unique Identifier (LUI) and password to access their online learning accounts.

Qld Celebrates World Teachers’ Day | Fri 27 Oct

On Friday 27 October Queensland will celebrate and acknowledge the work of the tens of thousands of teachers educating this state’s 800,000 students.

Queensland communities are encouraged to show their appreciation for their local teachers and the valuable work they do every day to ignite and fan the fire of learning in their students.

“It is the supreme art of the teacher to awaken joy in creative expression and knowledge.” – Albert Einstein

Message of Thanks

The Queensland Independent Schools Parents Network has joined with the Queensland College of Teachers and peak parent bodies representing Queensland state and Catholic school parents to issue a public message of thanks to teachers for their valued contributions.

View video | Link

Certificate of Appreciation

The Parents Network has created a certificate of appreciation that children can sign and give to their teachers on World Teachers’ Day.

Certificate | Parents Network WTD_certificate

The Queensland College of Teachers and the Department of Education and Training in conjunction with key education stakeholders, such as the Parents Network and Independent Schools Queensland, are leading a range of public campaigns to recognise the contributions and achievements of teachers.

All teachers across Queensland should have received ribbons featuring inspiring messages such as “inspiring learners”, “proud to teach” and “making a difference” to wear in the lead up to World Teachers’ Day.

Celebrating Inspiring Queensland Teachers

Brisbane’s Story Bridge will light up for Queensland teachers on Thursday 26 October.

On Friday 27 October – World Teachers’ Day – winners of the 2017 QCT Excellence in Teaching Awards will be announced. Six independent school teachers and leaders are among the 21 finalists.

Read their stories | Link

Follow the Parents Network on Facebook to share messages of thanks and support | Link

Read the Queensland College of Teachers special World Teachers’ Day e-newsletter  | Link

Global Recognition of Teachers

Internationally, World Teachers’ Day has been held on 5 October every year since 1994 to celebrate the anniversary of the signing of the 1966 UNESCO/ILO Recommendation concerning the Status of Teachers. This recognised the important role qualified and committed teachers played in all societies.

However, as this day usually falls during the Australian school holidays, Australia celebrates the day on the last Friday in October.

Bookmark this Free 8 Nov Parent Webinar

Solution Focused Approaches to Anxiety – a Toolkit for Parents | 8 November 2017

Anxiety is the number one mental health issue in Australia.

One in 14 young Australians aged between 4 and 17 experienced an anxiety disorder in 2015, according to Beyond Blue. This represents about  278,000 young people.

Anxiety is something most people experience at different points in their life. But when it persists and becomes overwhelming, impacting day-to-day living over a long period of time, that’s when anxiety is a problem.

Identifying the signs is important because anxiety is treatable. As many parents and teachers will know young children and teens can suffer with anxiety.

In this free webinar for parents, Lyn Worsley, Director of The Resilience Centre, will share her experience, insights and professional advice on:

  • the long vs short term perspective on anxiety
  • is anxiety catching?
  • solution-focussed approaches to dealing with anxiety
  • basic everyday strategies that can be used at home to reduce anxiety.

Dr Worsley is a Clinical Psychologist and Registered Nurse with extensive experience in teaching, youth work, early childhood, hospitals and correctional services. She specialises in child, adolescent and family psychology and relationship issues. She is also author of The Resilience Doughnut Book – The Secret of Strong Kids and The Resilience Doughnut Book – The Secret of Strong Adults.

When: 8 November 2017, 7.15pm Brisbane time (8.15pm AEDT)

Where: Parents do not need to register – just turn up on the night at:

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