MAYLANDS Peninsula Primary School parents have been in the national vanguard of a push to allow schools to hire secular welfare workers amidst concerns chaplaincy funding is discriminatory.
The school’s P&C surveyed parents in April and found 71 out of 80 supported “equal opportunity employment in public schools for every position, regardless of a person’s faith”.
Chaplaincy funding can be a mix of federal, state, and local government cash.
Federal Labor’s changes cleared one hurdle for MPPS to have the option of hiring a secular worker, but top-up funding from Bayswater council for an extra day a week is still tied up through Christian provider Youthcare.
Other schools on state funding can only access a chaplain through one of three state-approved providers: Youthcare, Scripture Union WA, and the sole secular provider OnPsych.
The peninsula P&C are now taking a motion to the WA Council of State School Organisations annual conference in September to seek fairer hiring at all schools.
They’ll ask WACSSO to lobby for public schools to directly employ professional non-clinical student welfare officers.