Love them or hate them, elections are part of our lives. Whilst some of us may complain about the inconvenience of having to vote in government elections, the thought of the alternative is abhorrent. Imagine living in a country where you do not have the basic human right to help decide who governs.
At the Queensland College of Teachers (QCT), practising teachers have the right to vote for three positions on our governing body, which helps shape education policy and makes decisions affecting the profession.
Over the coming months you will have the ability to not only vote for who you want to be on the Board, but to nominate yourself.
Your vote is crucial, not only for the future of the profession, but for the future of being able to maintain that vote.
Throughout the world the boards of teacher regulatory authorities, like the QCT, are put together in different ways. For instance, in Scotland and Ontario, a majority of their Board members are elected by teachers.
In Queensland, major stakeholders nominate most of the Board members and three practising teachers – two from the state sector and one from the non-state sector – are elected by teachers. Overall, there are 17 QCT Board members, including a minimum of nine registered teachers.
Whilst the number of teachers elected by their peers is limited (compared to Scotland or Ontario), it is still an opportunity for teachers to both nominate and/or elect Board members. If a significant number of teachers do not exercise their right to vote, Government may look at other options for appointing three Board members and teachers may lose their right to vote. It is important that teachers make up the majority of Board members.
Good governance of a profession by its members is a characteristic of a mature profession.
The Board of the QCT decides the strategic direction, and controls the affairs, of the College. The Board members have great responsibilities and must have a broad understanding of corporate governance and excellent knowledge of contemporary educational issues.
It won’t take long to either nominate for a position on the Board and/or cast your vote. Details of the election can be found on the home page of the QCT at www.qct.edu.au
The upcoming election of teachers for the 2016 Board belongs to Queensland teachers. Make the most of this opportunity to have your say. Exercise your right to vote and encourage others to as well!