‘School's in’ for isolated parents

SCHOOLS in for more than 200 elegates when Goondiwindi hosts the Isolated Children’s Parents’ Association Queensland (ICPA) annual state conference on September 18 and 19.

ICPA Qld president Andrew Pegler said attendees, which would include parents, education department heads, Health Minister Lawrence Springborg, Technical and Further Education Assistant Minister Saxon Rice, educators, schools and organisations, all had the same vision: to improve the education of rural students.

“The ICPA is a voluntary, non-profit lobby group that is widely recognised for its strong, informed voice.

“The key issues to be discussed this year include the new, national curriculum and its impact on rural and remote students, telecommunication and early childhood education.”

Conference convenor, and Goondiwindi resident, Di Selby said the event provided an opportunity to showcase the Goondiwindi district.

“Wonderful support has been gleaned from local businesses, council and from organisations throughout the State,” Mrs Selby said.

The organising committee, comprising representatives from the ICPA’s Kindon, Moonie and Westmar/Inglestone branches, has planned a packed few days.

“Guest speakers include renowned bush poet Marco Gliori and Clearing Skies director Michele Juratowitch, an expert on gifted children.

Mrs Selby said a conference dinner auction would include a Honda CRF50F motorbike donated by Tony McLaughlin and Honda, a Sonia Border painting, a Hide-and-Seek Rugs cattle hide, industrial strength bags from Tom’s Tarps and a signed Bronco’s jersey. 

Queensland Governor Penny Wensley will open the conference at the Goondiwindi Cultural Centre on September 18.

If anyone is interested in attending they MUST contact Di to register. Di’s contact number is 07 4676 1787.

About ICPA Qld

ICPA Qld is part of a national organisation, ICPA Australia Inc.  Together, parents and individuals work continuously for equity of access to education for rural and remote students. ICPA Qld has a state council and represents 47 branches, comprising more than 1200 families located throughout regional and remote areas.  It is the only community based, non-profit, parent lobby group with interests in all sectors and levels of education including; state schools, independent schools, church or boarding school, Prep to tertiary education, TAFE, agricultural college and all methods used to facilitate access to education and quality educational services.  

The ICPA’s strength is in the grass-root support it engenders and coordinates. Over the years, through its lobbying efforts, rural and remote families have gained financial assistance and access to education, which didn’t exist prior to the association’s formation.  Every branch member and state councillor, including the president, works for the ICPA on a voluntary basis.  

The ICPA has achieved myriad successful outcomes through its well orchestrated, disciplined and consultative approach. It is a vital link and a strong voice between rural and remote families and the government. Following the annual state conference, carried motions are written into policy and taken by state councillors to the relevant authority.   

On a face-to-face basis, state councillors bring issues before the government of the day, continuously lobbying for the right of rural and remote students to equity of educational outcomes and opportunities. 

The ICPA lobbies for and provides information and advice on:

 - Curriculum

 - Financial assistance

 - School travel

 - Boarding schools/hostels

 - Special education

 - Information technology

 -Teacher education

 - Distance education

 - Small schools

 - Special needs 

 - Early childhood

 - Tertiary education

 - Country area programs

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