INTRODUCTION

This policy outlines the College’s position in relation to the employment of Leadership, Administration, Teaching and Ancillary staff. It seeks to address issues, which relate to the College’s Christian Ethos in regard to the employment of all staff. Providence Christian College is a ministry of Thornlie Church of Christ and as such all staff indirectly form a part of the ministry team of the church. All staff must therefore accept that whilst employed by Providence Christian College, they must be in complete acceptance of the aims, objectives and purposes of the College as set out in the staff handbook and other College documentation, which includes the as outlined in the College’s Staff Handbook.

MINISTRY

The College operates as a ministry of the Thornlie Church of Christ, brought into existence to assist parents in fulfilling their God given responsibility to bring up their children in the ways of the Lord. The task of bringing children up to maturity is a responsibility that God has given primarily to parents (see Deuteronomy 6:4-9 and Ephesians 6:1-4). In the very complex and specialised world in which we live it is clear that very few parents would be totally equipped to give their children the sort of education that is needed to enable them to carry out their responsibilities in life. This being so, the parents then need to seek assistance from other members of the Body of Christ. God has given to the Church a teaching function and so it is entirely appropriate that the church should assist members of the ‘body’ by providing an education ‘of the Lord’ (Ephesians 6:4) that will enable the children ‘to grow up in everything into Christ’ (Ephesians 4:15.)

The College then is the Body of Christ ministering to the families of the ‘body’ to equip their children so that ‘speaking the truth in love they will in all things grow up into Christ, the Head of the Body”. (Ephesians 4:15).

The College is a community of learning that has a threefold responsibility:-

1. equipping, developing and training children

2. assisting them to grow in the knowledge and understanding of Jesus Christ.

3. and of helping them to learn to work together in co-operative service to the Lord.

We must see that our Christian College is a ministry raised up by our Lord for these specific purposes. This being the case, our presence in the College should be the result of a call from our Lord to exercise our God given gifts in the context of the ministry of the College. Anything less will reduce our presence to that of a hired ‘labourer’.

Whether or not we view the College as a ministry has a large bearing on how we view our relationship with the College, its students, their families and other staff. If we view the College as a ministry our hearts will be inclined to that of a servant. Should, on the other hand, we view the College as an employer then our hearts will incline to that of an employee.

Your work as a Staff member at Providence Christian College involves a commitment to the students, parents, other staff and the overall ethos of the College. In a Christian College relationships are of prime importance and this adds an additional pressure on staff since they are to see children the way Christ would have them seen. The commitment to individual children is often demanding and not without personal cost to the teacher. The only answer to these pressures is to operate as a cooperative community and to be totally reliant upon Christ.

RATIONALE

In the context of a Christian School it is important that staff share the same beliefs as those held by the College’s Governing Church expressed through the College’s Statement of Faith. This consistency is important in maintaining the support of participating church groups as represented in the parent community in what is fundamentally an interdenominational Christian ministry. A consistent Christian example set by staff is critical in achieving the general aims of the College; specifically the training of

Christian Disciples, speaking the truth in love, we will in all things Grow up into Him who is the Head Eph 4:15.

Christians are also called to make disciples …therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit Matthew 28:19 and to this end it is important than staff in their dealings with one another, parents and the students demonstrate their love for one another that they might fulfil this commandment of Jesus’ and that …by this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.” John 13:35

While it might be argued that a “knowledge” of Christian Beliefs is sufficient qualification for staff in a Christian School, we at Providence Christian College believe that to be an effective witness of Christ staff must have a personal faith in the Lord Jesus Christ Eph. 2:8-10, John 1:12, Eph. 1:7, Acts 4:12. We further believe that the Holy Spirit indwells believers when they accept Jesus Christ as Lord and Saviour, sealing them for the day of redemption and that His work continues in the life of believers, to produce in them a Christ-like character. It is the task of the Holy Spirit to glorify Jesus and reveal his word. Gen 1:2, Acts 13:2, 2 Cor. 3:18, Rom. 8:9, 1 Cor. 6:17, Eph. 1:13,14, 1 Cor. 12:12-14, Eph. 5:18, John 16:8-14, Eph. 4:30, Matt. 1:21. With this in mind, an individual who has not made such a commitment and in the absence of the indwelling of the Holy Spirit is not able to demonstrate Christ-like Character, an essential requirement for those charged with the responsibility of “making disciples”.

PRACTICE

PRE-CONDITIONS OF EMPLOYMENT 

  • All staff, regardless of denominational background or preference must agree to the College’s Statement of Faith.
  • All staff must be committed Christians and be prepared to testify to this.
  • All staff must sense a call to ministry here in service to the Lord.
  • Staff must be in full fellowship of a Christian church.
  • Whilst in the employ of Providence Christian College, staff must maintain active fellowship in a Christian church, which includes regular attendance at services of worship.
  • All Staff must provide the College with an appropriate Police Clearance Certificate, WACOT certificate or Working With Children Check card. (WWCC)

GENERAL CONDITIONS

1. Ministry

It is important that:

  • The College staff see their role as a ministry and a calling, not simply as employment alone
  • Relationships with one another reflect the Grace of God
  • The character traits that we encourage in one another and our students are honouring to God
  • In all we do, we point to the truth of God
  • Staff see themselves as part of a team and strive to maintain unity and harmony in their classroom and the general school community.

2. Professional Development

Staff are expected to attend in-service days as determined by the College from time to time including student free days during the school term and at the commencement and conclusion of each school year. There is a general expectation that staff accept at least half of the responsibility for their own professional development and that while the College does offer opportunities for professional development, staff too should be seeking out Professional Development opportunities for themselves.

3. College Ethos

Each staff member should be aware of, and in agreement with:

  • The College’s “Statement of Aims and Objectives”
  • Acceptance of the Lordship of Christ
  • Acceptance of the Bible as the revealed Word of God
  • In line with these underlying principles, the College aims to provide an education of high quality that also:-
  • Fosters self discipline in the students while teaching them to accept the discipline of the Christian Community
  • Trains the student in the moral and ethical standards of the Bible as interpreted in the teaching of the New Testament
  • Develops the student’s creative and critical abilities
  • Stresses cooperation rather than competition and fosters the development of the gifts, skills and abilities of the student for the service of Jesus Christ in the Body of Christ and the community
  • All teaching staff are required to teach in a way that is consistent with the philosophy of the College as detailed here and in other places
  • Staff are required to abide by the procedures and College expectations outlined in the Teachers Handbook

4. General Conditions of Employment

  • Your employment as teachers will be subject to the provisions of the Teachers Non-Government Schools State Award 1976 as it applies from time to time.
  • The College grants long service leave in accordance with the W.A. Long Service Leave Act.
  • Applications for leave should be made at least six months in advance of the date required.
  • Superannuation is provided for under the terms of the relevant state regulations.
  • Sick leave / compassionate leave (in compliance with the provisions of the award) may be taken on full pay, part pay or without pay by application to the Principal.
  • As a staff member of Providence Christian College, it is important that there be a maintenance of team spirit and unity. Staff should recognise that they form part of the ministry team. Staff should recognise that there will be differences from time to time and they should be resolved in a manner that maintains unity of the team.

5. Initial Appointments

The College does not employ teaching staff for probationary periods. All new staff will be employed for an initial fixed term of 12 months. Continuation of employment will be subject to the staff member applying for a permanent position at the College after completing an initial term.

6. Pastoral Role

As a staff member of Providence Christian College, all staff have a pastoral responsibility to students at the college. It is important for staff to develop quality relationships with students. Whilst quality relationships are important, staff should be careful not to get too close in a way that compromises the professional role of the staff member in supporting college policies. Where there are matters of pastoral concern, they should be referred to the form adviser and/or pastoral care counsellor for follow-up.

7. Devotions:

It is expected for all staff to attend staff devotions, which are held one morning a week. Devotions begin at 8.00am on a Wednesday Morning. This is an opportunity for staff to share together and set a spiritual focus for the working day. It is important for staff to interact and spend time in prayer. Staff are to make this time a priority.

8. Staff Handbook:

The Staff Handbook, reviewed annually, amplifies and explains procedural matters and policies associated with the employment of the staff member. It is understood that all staff employed at Providence Christian College should be familiar with the Staff Handbook and be prepared to be supportive of the procedures that are put in place for the smooth operation of the college. Any procedural difficulties that may be experienced, should be brought to the attention of the appropriate Assistant Principal for consideration of amendment for the subsequent year.

9. Salary Packaging:

Salary packaging is available upon request and in consultation with the Business Manager.

10. Financial Matters:

Any concerns regarding remuneration should be taken up directly with the Business Manager.

11. Removal Expenses:

It is not general board policy to pay removal and associated expenses for staff employed by the College, except for Assistant Principal and above.

12. Resignation:

All resignations should be in writing to the Principal with the appropriate notice given in the relevant award.

13. Performance Review:

It is a requirement of employment that staff undergo periodic appraisal of their performance, staff are therefore expected to participate in this process and contribute to its outcomes.

14. Governance

The School Board is responsible for the general oversight of operations and the determination of broad policies. It is the body legally responsible for the School’s activities.

The Principal has had delegated to him pastoral responsibility for the school community. He also has the responsibility of interpreting the aims and objectives consistent with the ethos of the School and has been given authority for the operation of the School, including the engagement, dismissal, leadership and care of staff, and the issuing of instructions for:–

  • the determination of curriculum, programs and procedures
  • the teaching practices which are to apply
  • health, safety and welfare
  • extra curricular activities
  • spiritual and pastoral care
  • the discipline policy and practice which are to apply
  • other matters as they arise

Staff are required to be supportive in respect of these matters, to set an example of personal conduct and attitude consistent with the ethos of the School, and to carry out your responsibility in implementing the curriculum, programs, teaching practices, and other activities decided by the Board.

Staff are directly answerable to the Principal who is responsible for the day to day management of the College and carrying out of the College Board’s Policies.

The College reserves the right, subject to compliance with the provisions of the Award, to make changes in the conditions of your employment which, in the opinion of the Board, become necessary or appropriate in the light of the position and circumstances of the College and of changes therein and of other relevant circumstances, including variations in the provisions of the award.

EXEMPTIONS

In relation to the employment of ancillary staff not involved in leadership, administration, teaching or teaching support; persons not professing to be Christian, who are of good character and who have an appropriate Police Clearance or WWCC may be considered for employment.