fbpx  

Council Updates

MENU:  Independent Review Community Consultation |  Council Transition   |  Governance Review  |  Contact Details

 

Welcome

This page has been created to keep you updated and informed on matters your School Council is working on.

Updates

Thursday 28 June

  • Click here to read a message from John Gillam about key steps taken to move forward

Wednesday 6 June

  • Click here to read a message from the Interim School Council announcing the appointment of John Gillam as Chairman

Thursday 31 May

  • Click here to read a letter from outgoing Chairman of School Council, Robert Utter, introducing the new School Council
  • Click here to read a precis of the report prepared by Ray Finkelstein AO QC and Renee Enbom with regards to the dismissal of Rohan Brown
  • Click here to read a letter from Robert Utter providing an update on the CCI and the Independent Review

Thursday 24 May

  • Click here to read an update from the Nominations Committee regarding the Interim School Council

Tuesday 15 May

  • Click here to read a letter from Michael Davies to the Trinity community
  • Click here to read a letter from Robert Utter to the Trinity community
  • Click here to read a media release regarding the resignation of the Headmaster
  • Click here to read an update from the Community Consultation Group

Wednesday 9 May

  • Click here to read an update from the Nominations Committee regarding the Interim School Council

Friday 4 May

  • Click here to read an update from the Community Consultation Group

Tuesday 1 May

  • Click here to read an update from the Nominations Committee regarding the Interim School Council

Saturday 21 April

  • Click here to read a letter from Robert Utter announcing the Parents’ Association Nominee to School Council

Thursday 19 April

  • Click here to read a letter from Robert Utter announcing the members of the Nominations Committee and the associated nominations process

Monday 16 April

  • Click here to read a letter from Michael Davies to parents and students regarding arrangements for the 1st day of Term 2

Wednesday 11 April

  • Click here to read a letter from Robert Utter regarding the Independent Review into the Dismissal of Rohan Brown
  • Click here to read a Media Release from the School regarding the Independent Review into the Dismissal of Rohan Brown

Monday 9 April

  • Click here to read a letter from Robert Utter regarding the transition of School Council

Wednesday 28 March

  • Click here to read a letter from Robert Utter updating the School Community on the consultation process, transition of School Council, governance review and independent review of the dismissal of Rohan Brown

Friday 23 March

  • Click here to read a message from Michael Davies.

Thursday 22 March

Click here to read the transcript of a video message from Chairman of School Council, Robert Utter given on Thursday 22 March.

Monday 19 March

  • Click here to read a letter from the Chairman of Council regarding the terms of reference for the independent review of the dismissal of Rohan Brown and updates on the consultation process and the School Open Day

Friday 16 March

  • Click here to read a letter from the Chairman of Council announcing the appointment of Mr Raymond Finkelstein AO QC and Ms Renee Enbom to conduct the independent review of the dismissal of Rohan Brown and updates on the consultation process and governance review

Wednesday 14 March

  • Click here to read a media release announcing the new Chairman of School Council

Monday 12 March

  • Click here to read a media release announcing the consultation process and governance review

Saturday 10 March

  • Click here to read a letter from the Chairman of Council announcing the independent review of the dismissal of Rohan Brown

Friday 9 March

  • Click here to read a letter from the Chairman of Council advising the dismissal of Rohan Brown

 

Independent review

An independent review into the dismissal of Deputy Headmaster, Rohan Brown, was commissioned by School Council.

The review was led by Mr Raymond Finkelstein AO QC, who was a Judge of the Federal Court of Australia from 1997 until 2011, and President of the Australian Competition Tribunal from 2008 until 2011. During 2011 and 2012, he was Chair of the Independent Inquiry into Aspects of the Media.

Ms Renee Enbom, a barrister, assisted Mr Finkelstein with the review. Ms Enbom has acted in a wide range of commercial matters, including many class actions and other large-scale proceedings.

Terms of reference for independent review

Mr Finkelstein established and issued to school terms of reference for the independent review.

The seven terms of reference were:

  1. What are the School policies, codes of conduct or statutory or regulatory requirements that set out the conduct required of teaching staff?
  2. In what circumstances can a member of the teaching staff
    – be dismissed; or
    – have his or her employment contract terminated.
  3. What are the procedures that must be followed before a member of the teaching staff:
    – is able to be dismissed; or
    – may have his or her employment contract terminated.
  4.  What were the procedures that were followed leading to the dismissal/termination of employment contract of Mr Rohan Brown?
  5.  Were the procedures fair?
  6.  Was the dismissal decision/termination of employment contract justified, reasonable or proportionate?
  7. What other issues relating to the dismissal/termination of employment contract of Mr Brown should be brought to the attention of the School?

 

Findings and recommendations from independent review

The reviewers, who interviewed a long list of school community members over previous weeks, found that Mr Brown’s dismissal by the Council was not justified for the reason that:

  • While Mr Brown breached the school’s Code of Conduct, and this may have constituted serious misconduct justifying dismissal, the Headmaster, Dr Michael Davies, who had the right to dismiss, had chosen weeks earlier not to end Mr Brown’s contract; and
  • School Council, who dismissed Mr Brown following a Code of Conduct hearing, did not actually have the requisite authority to do so.

Trinity received the review’s recommendations last night, with Mr Finkelstein and Ms Enbom to provide a full report into their investigation in the coming days.

The five recommendations from the concluded review are:

  1. That School Council record in its minutes that it will not remove from the Headmaster the ability to dismiss teaching staff with the Headmaster being best placed to make staffing decisions (this relates to the council’s decision to intervene and dismiss Mr Brown based on an understanding on the matter in March)
  2. That discussions should take place with Mr Brown to determine whether he wishes to resume his employment at the school, and if he does, the circumstances of his return
  3. That assuming Mr Brown resumes his position, the Headmaster should write to Mr Brown advising –
    • he should never in any circumstances cut a student’s hair,
    • how the school’s personal appearance policy should be enforced, for example, by sending a student home, and
    • any breach of the instructions may result in summary dismissal
  4. That the school should send a notice to parents setting out the manner in which the school will deal with students who do not conform with the personal appearance policy
  5. That it would not be proper for the Headmaster to revise Mr Brown’s duties, without consent, until the end of his five-year term as Deputy Headmaster and Head of Senior School.

Trinity Grammar has announced that it has offered Rohan Brown a return to the school as Deputy Headmaster, effective Monday 16 April, which has been accepted.

The report by the independent reviewers, Ray Finkelstein AO QC and Renee Enbom, provides details of all aspects of their investigation, including summaries of the interviews they conducted with a range of people.

Mr Finkelstein and Ms Enbom have advised that, for a number of reasons, it would not be appropriate to publish the report. They have recommended that only a summary of the report be made available to the School community.

The school has considered and accepted this recommendation and expects to be able to release a summary report in the coming days.

We appreciate people’s interest in the report and thank them for their patience while the summary is being prepared.

 

School community consultation

The school is in contact with various groups in preparation for a deep and wide, but also efficient and effective, consultation process.

The school consultation will include a representative from the following groups:

  • Students
  • Parents
  • Staff
  • Past students
  • Headmaster
  • Past chairs of Council
  • Council

The consultation will be led by an external facilitator. In the interests of complete independence, the appointment of that external facilitator has been determined by the consultation group. Danielle Huntersmith has been selected by the group to assist them in developing their charter.

It’s hoped people will engage in the school’s consultation process in good faith and put trust in the process.

Updates issued by the Facilitator of the Community Consultation can be found by clicking here.

 

School Council transition

Trinity Grammar is incorporated as a Company Limited by Guarantee and will be governed by a Interim Council from 1 June 2018 until May 2019. There will be no impediment to a director of the Interim Council seeking to continue on as a member of Council after May 2019.

As a company, the School operates under the Corporations Act 2001 and as a school it is registered under the Education and Training Reform Regulations 2017. The school’s constitution can be found by clicking here.

Trinity’s Interim School Council from 1 June 2018 is:

  • Mr John Gillam – Chairman
  • Ms Lucy Muchic – Deputy Chair
  • Mrs Sally Bateman – Treasurer
  • Mr Chris Braithwaite
  • Mr Mathew Browning
  • Prof Don Campbell
  • Ms Nichola Lefroy
  • Ms Lisa Williams

You can find out more about your School Council by clicking here.

School governance review

Trinity has also committed to establishing a school governance review, which includes Trinity’s constitution and composition of council.

This review will be a comprehensive exercise that may take many months.  It will be carried out by an independent expert in governance and administration who has experience in education. The school is working to appoint someone to lead the review and is determining its scope.

 

How to contact your School Council

Should you wish to discuss any matters on this page, please get in contact via schoolcouncil@trinity.vic.edu.au or 03 9854 3600.