Australian society is defined, among other aspects, by a belief in elected Government; by a commitment to the rule of law, to equal rights for all before the law; and by a belief in freedom of religion, freedom of speech and freedom of association. Our society is also tolerant of a range of religious, political, social and cultural beliefs and values in the context of the fundamental principle of our democracy. The Education and Reform Act 2006 requires all education providers to operate in a manner consistent with this set of Australian democratic principles. In accordance with the Act, St Joseph’s School delivers curriculum programs and learning and teaching in a manner that supports and promotes the principles and practice of Australian democracy.
This includes a commitment to:
the rule of law
equal rights for all before the law
freedom of religion
freedom of speech and association
the values of openness and tolerance
Promotion and Communication of the Democratic Principles
St Joseph’s School promotes and communicates the principles and practice of Australian democracy by the following strategies:
1. The Vision and Mission of the school expresses its Catholic orientation in the midst of diversity across all aspects of life. The school shares in the mission of the Catholic Church and its Vision and Mission expresses this relationship. Similarly, the inspirational nature of the Vision and Mission informs and invites all members of the school community into relationship in the life giving work of the school. In dialogue, we learn from each other and flourish together. The Vision and Mission Statements are developed through dialogue that is representative of the school community.
2. The curriculum program is based on the Victorian Curriculum F-10 (which incorporates the requirements of the Australian Curriculum) and Awakenings (CEOB) and develops in students: o a lifelong sense of belonging to, and engagement with, civic life as an active and informed citizen in the context of Australia as a secular democratic nation with a dynamic, multicultural and multi-faith society St Joseph’s School: Australian Democratic Principles 2 o knowledge, understanding and appreciation of the values, principles, institutions and practices of Australia’s system of democratic government and law, and the role of the citizen in Australian government and society o skills necessary to investigate contemporary civics and citizenship issues, and foster responsible participation in Australia’s democracy o knowledge, skills and capacities and dispositions to participate in the civic life of their nation at a local, regional and global level (Victorian Curriculum and Assessment Authority, 2016).
3. The school’s Australian Democratic Principles Statement and Vision and Mission Statement are available on the school website.
4. As part of the induction process, staff are made aware of the integration of the democratic principles into the curriculum and the life of the school.
5. Parents/guardians and students are provided with a handbook that outlines the curriculum and learning and teaching for each year level