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    Coat of ArmsMedia Release
    Minister for Education and Training and Minister for the Arts
    The Honourable Rod Welford

    ELECTION CARETAKER CONVENTIONS CLARIFIED FOR STATE SCHOOLS

    Minister for Education and Training and Minister for the Arts
    The Honourable Rod Welford

    Thursday, October 25, 2007

    ELECTION CARETAKER CONVENTIONS CLARIFIED FOR STATE SCHOOLS

    Education and Training Minister Rod Welford said that in light of recent public discussion about election caretaker conventions for Queensland state schools, he had requested his Director-General clarify the protocols in place.

    “The principal focus of our schools is on students and their learning,” Mr Welford said.

    “Schools should not be used for electioneering or campaigning and Education Queensland staff should not engage in political activity while on school grounds during scheduled hours of duty.

    “We will continue to use the caretaker conventions, and commonsense, in managing requests to visits schools.”

    The main thrust of the conventions are:

    • All current elected Federal, State and local members are welcome to visit their local schools, in negotiation with the relevant Principal.
    • Federal Ministers also are welcome to visit schools, following approval from the Minister’s Office and in negotiation with the relevant Principal.
    • The caretaker conventions should be employed in conjunction with commonsense when responding to requests from political candidates.
    • Requests for visits from politicians (other than Federal, State and local members) should continue to be made through the Minister’s Office, as a matter of courtesy. Approval will then be forwarded through the Department.
    • Media, including television camera crews, may visit schools in conjunction with such visits.
    • Principals should continue to exercise due care with students appearing in the media during such visits.

    “This is a clarification so that everyone understands the protocols and visits can occur in a straightforward fashion,” Mr Welford said. “I expect commonsense will be applied.

    “I have also asked for a review of communication channels in my department to ensure we do not have any future communication problems with the approval process.

    “I would like to thank all those MPs who frequently visit and support our schools and who exercise the common courtesy of giving reasonable notice of their intention to visit.”

    Media Contact: Marnie Stitz on 3237 1000 or 0419 734 985