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DG's View

23 September 2011

Proposed holiday changes announced

The government has proposed major changes to public holidays and student free days in Queensland. They include moving the Queen's birthday public holiday to later in the year and allocating an extra public holiday when Christmas Day, Boxing Day or New Year's Day fall on a weekend. It is also proposed that Easter holidays for state schools be extended from six weekdays to two weeks by moving some of the student free days. Go online for details or to have your say on the proposed changes. The deadline for feedback is 31 October.

Summer Schools support for students

This school holidays more Year 5, 6 and 7 students are benefiting from additional literacy and numeracy assistance through our Summer Schools program. It is expected that approximately 1500 students will attend Summer Schools at 72 locations around Queensland where they'll receive intensive support in literacy and numeracy. Since the start of Summer Schools in 2009, more than 7700 students have participated in the program. Most pleasing is that up to 75 per cent have shown an improvement in at least one area of literacy and/or numeracy. Well done to all staff involved.

Funding windfall for Sunshine Coast TAFE

Sunshine Coast TAFE has won an AusAID contract to provide training for people living in the Pacific through the Australia-Pacific Technical College (APTC). Since 2007, the APTC has delivered training to more than 3000 graduates. The Federal Government has announced it will provide $152 million in AusAID funding, over four years, to continue the college. This will help more than 40 TAFE staff continue to provide training and support. Campuses are located in Fiji, Papua New Guinea, Samoa and Vanuatu. The partnership comprises Sunshine Coast TAFE, Box Hill Institute and GRM International. Congratulations to the team at Sunshine Coast TAFE for being involved in such an innovative program.

Showcase Gala Dinner - Tickets on sale now

The 2011 Showcase Awards for Excellence in Schools Gala Dinner - Reflecting Excellence is fast approaching, and I am looking forward to celebrating the success of this year's State Finalists. The 24 finalist programs cover all areas of education, and I invite you to join me at the dinner on Friday 21 October in Brisbane, where the eight state award winners will be announced. For details about this year's State Finalists or how to purchase dinner tickets, visit the Showcase website.

New high school for northern Gold Coast

A new high school will be built at Pimpama on the northern Gold Coast, a fast-growing region of Queensland. Announced earlier this week, the first stage of the school is expected to open in 2013 with about 215 students. Stage two is planned to open in 2015, and by the time stage three is completed in 2017, almost 1000 students will be walking through the gates. It will be a first-class, modern facility with a strong focus on environmental sustainability and technology.

New executive for Council of Parents and Citizens' Associations

Congratulations to the new executive of the Queensland Council of Parents and Citizens' Associations for 2011-12. The State President is Margaret Leary; State Vice Presidents are Loris Doessel and Wayne Hopper; State Treasurer is Mick Cutler; and State Secretary is Dianne Loddon. I wish the new executive all the best.

If you have any questions on departmental initiatives, please send them to the Inquiries Mailbox.

For more news go to OnePortal (DET employees only) or the Training Employee Portal under Marketing and Communication, Newsletters.

Regards

Julie Grantham
Director-General