Commitment to Australian Democratic Principles


St. Joseph's primary school is committed to the principles and practice of Australian democracy.

 

Australian society is defined, among other aspects, by a belief in elected Government; by a commitment to the rule of law, to equal rights for all before the law; and by a belief in freedom of religion, freedom of speech and freedom of association. Our society is also tolerant of a range of religious, political, social and cultural beliefs and values in the context of the fundamental principle of our democracy. 

 

The ‘Education and Reform Act 2006’ requires all education providers to operate in a manner consistent with this set of Australian democratic principles.

 

In accordance with the Act, we deliver our programs and teaching in a manner that supports and promotes the principles and practice of Australian democracy. This includes a commitment to:

  • Elected government
  • The rule of law
  • Equal rights for all before the law
  • Freedom of religion
  • Freedom of speech and association
  • The values of openness and tolerance

 

The following processes and resources assist our school to support and promote the principles and practice of Australian democracy in our programs and teaching.

 

The Catholic School Review processes require our school to present a published vision and mission statement based on the mission or purpose of a Catholic school. By the very nature of Catholic schools, which seek to develop the whole person and to assist students to become active members of the Catholic Church and contributors to the common good of society, these statements acknowledge Australian democratic values. 

 

Our school displays a poster of democratic values as required by the Australian Government. 

 

The Civics and Citizenship domain of the Victorian Curriculum, which is required to be taught in all Catholic schools, provides students with knowledge, skills and opportunities to understand and practise what it means to be a citizen in a democracy. All students are required to work through the two dimensions of the Civics and Citizen domain; Civic Knowledge and Understanding, and Community Engagement.

 

Through striving to live out the St. Joseph’s STAR Values of ‘Stay Safe’, ‘Try Your Best’, ‘Act Responsibly’ and ‘Respect Yourself and Others’, we are committed to ensuring that our school culture deepens an understanding of Australian values. St Joseph’s school actively promotes and teaches the following values for Australian schooling through the STAR Values:

 

Stay Safe

  • Care and compassion – care for self and others 

  • Integrity – act in accordance with principles of moral and ethical conduct, ensure consistency between words and deeds

Try Your Best

  • Doing Your Best - Seek to accomplish something worthy and admirable, try-hard, pursue excellence

  • Fair go – pursue and protect the common good where all people are treated fairly for a just society

Act Responsibly

  • Responsibility – be accountable for one’s own actions, resolve differences in constructive, non-violent and peaceful ways, contribute to society and to civic life, take care of the environment 

  • Honesty and trustworthiness – be honest, sincere and seek the truth

Respect for Yourself and Others

  • Respect – treat others with consideration and regard, respect another person’s point of view

  • Understanding, Tolerance and Inclusion – be aware of others and their cultures, accept diversity within a democratic society, being included and including others. 

  • Freedom – enjoy all the rights and privileges of Australian citizenship free from unnecessary interference or control, and stand up for the rights of others

At St. Joseph’s, we address and live out these values in the following ways:

  • Our school displays posters of democratic values as required by the Australian Government; these are located in each of the school buildings

  • The Civics and Citizenship domain of the Victorian Curriculum, which is required to be taught in all Catholic schools provides students with knowledge, skills and opportunities to understand and practise what it means to be a citizen in a democracy.

  • Acknowledgement of Country is part of our Assemblies and we have the Australian and Aboriginal flag on display during our assemblies.

  • Our children sing the National Anthem at the conclusion of each assembly

  • Democratic principles and the 9 values of Australian Schooling are an integral part of our STAR values at St. Joseph’s; these values are shared in our parent handbook, the staff handbook, the school website and related policies.

  • Our STAR values form a major component of the Personal and Social Capability curriculum taught at St Joseph’s

  • The Civics and Citizenship domain of the Victorian Curriculum provides students with knowledge, skills and opportunities to understand and practise what it means to be a citizen in a democracy. Students are required to work through the two dimensions of the Civics and Citizen domain; Civic Knowledge and Understanding, and Community Engagement.

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