• Publications 2012 Annual Report
  • Action Area 3 – Leadership


    • Promote and develop shared, visionary and inspirational leadership.

    • Promote a culture of of creativity and innovative practice.

    • Ensure ethical governance, high standards and compliance in all schools.

    Read more about the Leadership Strategic Direction. 

    Leadership plays a key role in shaping the conditions and climate in which effective teaching and learning occur. Effective leaders are learners themselves, building a collaborative learning culture where all staff are expected and encouraged to engage in professional learning, always seeking innovative and sustainable ways to improve their practice.


    The Catholic Education Office Melbourne (CEOM), through the Leadership and Professional Learning Unit, is committed to building capacity in systems, schools and individuals for high-quality leadership, continuous professional learning, effective teaching and student learning, and school improvement.

    School Improvement Framework (SIF)SIF logo 

    The School Improvement Framework (SIF) recognises the distinctive nature of Catholic schools and promotes a four-year improvement cycle involving self-reflection, review and planning with a component of external objective assessment and accountability. In 2012 a total of 84 schools were reviewed, including 72 primary schools, 10 secondary schools and 2 special education facilities. The following improvements were implemented:

    • The establishment of a working party to explore a model of differentiated negotiated school reviews.
    • Stage 1 of the online School Improvement Planning System (SIPS) saw 196 schools engaged with SIPS during the year.

    Leadership Standards Framework (LSF)

    LSF logo

    The Leadership Standards Framework (LSF) supports the development of any teacher involved in educational leadership and provides Catholic schools with a common understanding and language around school leadership.

    In 2012 the LSF website underwent a substantial upgrade in response to user feedback. It now provides opportunities for interaction, communication and collaboration across a broader educational network.

    In 2012 the Middle Leaders program, designed to embed the understandings from the LSF, attracted 44 participants and was offered as a unit for the Australian Catholic University (ACU) Masters in Educational Leadership.

    Leadership Continuum

    leadership continuum logo

    The Leadership Continuum identifies six phases of leadership: Emerging Leaders, Established Leaders, Aspirant Principals, Initial Principals, Experienced Principals and Mentor Principals. In 2012 an Emerging Leaders program was piloted with 16 participants working on an action research project in their schools. Further leadership initiatives were offered including re:th!nk Aspiring to Principalship, Leadership Learning Support Grants and Enhancing Leadership Team Capabilities.


    Personal Story 

    Greg Thomas 

    Greg Thomas
    Principal (first year)
    St Carlo Borromeo School, Templestowe

    My role as principal at St Carlo Borromeo School is foremost as an educator, not a manager. That’s one of the reasons I opted to be the mathematics coordinator and to maintain that classroom and curriculum connection.

    As a leader I need to be authentic, and a key personal challenge is to maintain current education practise. It’s important for teachers, students and parents to see me as a teacher and not only managing the administration side. A school should be about the education of its students and to engage them to maximise their learning.

    St Carlo Borromeo organises parent forums once a month, so parents can discuss issues of importance over a cup of tea or coffee, including Prep transition and the effectiveness of online communication strategies between families and the school.

    We have a high student wellbeing focus to engage the students in their learning and communications. Young people need to have a voice and to be proactive in their day-to-day learning.

    One initiative along these lines is the ‘principal for a day’ concept. I swap roles with a student and sit in class for a day to see how engaged the children are and what questions they are asking. I basically have a day in the life of a student and a student can experience what my life is like as a principal.

    With another initiative, we invite residents from nearby nursing homes to lunch. The parish organises the lunch and the children provide the entertainment. It’s a wonderful experience for all concerned, the young and the elderly. The plan is to have several of these functions every year.


    The principal plays a vital role in developing the climate which supports high-quality learning and teaching. Coaching was available to all principals in the Archdiocese with specific focus on principals in the second year of their appointment and those involved in the Enhancing Leadership Team Capabilities Program. Nine principals who participated in the Primary Professional Learning Program offered had eight years' experience as a principal. The Primary Principal Appraisal Process was further developed in its second year and attracted 14 participants. There were 22 primary and 4 secondary principal appointments in 2012, with 9 taking up principalship for the first time.

    Leadership Conference

    More than 450 Catholic school and system leaders gathered for the 2012 CEOM Leadership Conference at Etihad Stadium on 30–31 October where they engaged in the theme of Leading Performance Development: the next step. The Leadership Conference was extended to two days and attracted 426 participants. Over these two days, participants were able to reflect on the contributions of highly regarded local and international presenters through keynote presentations, workshops and school-based showcases. The conference ‘buzz’ was high from early on and remained right through to the final panel discussion. The panel required each of the keynote presenters to succinctly summarise their view of the next step for our schools in leading performance and development. Feedback from participants and contributors alike was overwhelming in its praise of the high quality of the conference.

    Leadership conference
    Leadership Conference 

    Performance and Development

    Creating and supporting a Performance and Development Culture (PDC) in schools is a key strategy aimed at building a culture of learning and improvement in schools. Based on the premise that an effective school provides all staff with objective, constructive and actionable feedback on their performance, as well as opportunities for ongoing and responsive professional learning, PDC will commence rollout of the implementation of Australian Teacher Performance and Development Framework in 2013. The program was endorsed by education ministers in August 2012.

    Recipients of the Performance and Development Culture certificates
    with the Minister for Education, the Hon. Martin Dixon MP

    National Partnerships

    In 2012 the CEOM coordinated all accountability and reporting requirements related to National Partnerships including the implementation, monitoring and evaluation of the Victorian Catholic sector's implementation plans.

    Other Initiatives and Responsibilities 

    • Emerging Leaders Program
    • Working Party on Negotiated Reviews
    • Consultations on implementation of the Australian Performance and Development Framework
    • Administration support for Change²
    • Implementation of the online School Improvement Planning System (SIPS)
    • Leadership Learning Support Grants
    • P–12 Principal Induction
    • Principal selection and appointment processes
    • Access to 360 degree surveys
    • Women in Leadership
    • International Speaker Series.


    Return to top