Department of Education (New South Wales)

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New South Wales Department of Education
Government Department overview
Formed 2015
Preceding agencies
  • New South Wales Department of Education and Communities
  • New South Wales Department of Education and Training
Jurisdiction New South Wales
Headquarters 35 Bridge Street, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
Ministers responsible
Government Department executive
Key document
Website http://www.dec.nsw.gov.au

The New South Wales Department of Education, a department of the Government of New South Wales, is responsible for primary schools and secondary schools. Previously, Technical and Further Education (TAFE) colleges were also part of the DoE but as of 1 July 2015, they have been moved to the Department of Industry by the NSW Government. In addition, the department oversees the provision of pre-school, adult, migrant and higher education in the state.

The Department's powers are principally drawn from the Education Act, 1990 (NSW).[1]

Structure[edit]

The head of the Department is its Secretary, presently Dr Michele Bruniges. The Department reports to the Minister for Education, currently Adrian Piccoli; supported by the Assistant Minister for Education and the Minister for Early Childhood Education, currently Leslie Williams. Ultimately the ministers are responsible to the Parliament of New South Wales.

With a budget of more than A$8 billion, over 2,240 schools with a total enrolments of almost 1 million students, DoE represents roughly one-quarter of the State's total budget each year.

Controversy[edit]

On May 2, 2015, the Department banned three Christian books from the church-run Special Religious Education (SRE) program for undisclosed reasons. The banned books were A Sneaking Suspicion (1995) by Dr. John Dickson, You: An Introduction (2008) by Rev. Dr. Michael Jensen, and Teen Sex by the Book (2012) by Dr. Patricia Weerakoon.[2] It was speculated that the books' pro-monogamy stance may have led to the ban.[3] The ban was subsequently lifted on May 19, 2015.[4]

On 18 May, 2015, the Minister for Education, The Hon. Adrian Piccoli MP issued a letter to the Anglican Archbishop of Sydney. In the letter, the Minister acknowledged that "there was no consultation by the DEC with the Anglican Church prior to the memorandum [banning the books] being issued to Directors Public Schools on 6 May 2015". The Minister also acknowledged that "Dr. Weerakoon's book has never been part of the SRE curriculum", while the other two books "have been part of the authorised Sydney Anglican High School SRE curriculum for many years [and are] taught sensitively and in an age appropriate manner ". [5]

Secretary of Education (formerly Director-General)[edit]

  • Peter Board (8 February 1905 - 31 December 1922)
  • Stephen Smith (1 January 1923 - 1 August 1930)
  • G. Ross Thomas (2 August 1930 - 21 September 1940)
  • John McKenzie(22 September 1940 - 29 November 1952)
  • Sir Harold Wyndham (1 December 1952 - 31 December 1968)
  • David Verco (1 January 1969 - 3 July 1972)
  • John Buggie (4 July 1972 - 18 February 1977)
  • Douglas Swan (21 February 1977 - 8 July 1985)
  • Robert Winder (10 July 1985 - 29 April 1988)
  • Fenton Sharpe (30 April 1988 - 12 November 1991)
  • Ken Boston (2 January 1992 - 12 July 2002)
  • Jan McLelland (22 October 2002 - 22 January 2004)
  • Andrew Cappie-Wood (22 January 2004 - 14 April 2007)
  • Michael Coutts-Trotter (14 April 2007 - 28 March 2011)
  • Dr Michele Bruniges (7 September 2011 - )

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "NSW Education Act 1990". Parliament of New South Wales. 1990. Retrieved 6 May 2007. 
  2. ^ "Three Christian books banned from SRE curriculum in NSW". Bible Society of Australia. 2015. Retrieved 8 May 2015. 
  3. ^ "Anglican church angry over Department of Education banning of "one-partner" material". The Daily Telegraph. May 8, 2015. Retrieved May 10, 2015. 
  4. ^ "Minister for Education lifts Christian book ban". Bible Society of Australia. 2015. Retrieved 19 May 2015. 
  5. ^ "Letter from the Minister for Education" (PDF). Minister for Education, NSW Government. 2015. Retrieved 26 August 2015. 

External links[edit]