News & Events

Re: IMPORTANT UPDATE: Change of end of school day and additional days for staff


Dear Parents and Guardians

Like many professions in Australia, the staff in Catholic schools in Victoria are governed by an enterprise agreement that determines the pay and working conditions for employees working in our schools. A new award applying to most of the Catholic Dioceses in Victoria and impacting staff across most of the Catholic schools, including ours, which is soon to be approved and is now required to come into effect in all Melbourne Archdiocese Catholic Schools (MACS).

The new agreement delivers several positive changes for both our dedicated staff and the overall functioning of our school, including improved pay and employment conditions. One key aspect of this agreement is the inclusion of new time-in-lieu provisions, which will enable our teachers and support staff to accumulate additional time off when they are required to work more than their regular 38 hours per week which might include overnight camps and supervision at evening and weekend activities.

This change is a recognition of the considerable extra work our teachers are asked to do and will enhance their work-life balance and well-being.

The introduction of this new award will have implications for every school governed by the award, including ours, recognising that the context and timetable for each school is slightly different. For St Lawrence of Brindisi, in order to implement the new provisions for staff, we have had to make some changes to our timetable and our processes.

There will be a small change to the school day and our school will now finish at 3.10pm rather than 3.15pm. We are hopeful this small change should not impact parents and guardians too greatly. It has also meant that we have to make a small change to our recess times so that these are two thirty-minute recess blocks. This will ensure that changes do not impact on the learning time allocated for students.

Our dismissal process for the end of the day will also need to change to accommodate the requirements of the new award. It is critical that parents and guardians are aware of these changes so that we can make sure we maintain the duty of care and supervision of our students which remains our primary concern.

These new procedures will start from the beginning of Week 8, Monday August 28.

Following some discussions with our School Advisory Council last night and being mindful that we are making a significant change, to our procedures, parents and guardians will be able to enter the school grounds and must be ready to collect their children from their classroom from 3.05pm. The children will be dismissed at 3.10pm exactly. Any children not collected at 3.10pm will be sent to one of three dismissal points noted below (see attached map) to be collected by their parents, guardians or carers from there.

  1. Kiss n’ Go
  2. Gate 1 (near the exit to the Kiss n’ Go)
  3. Gate 2 (near the exit to the Administration Office)

Parents and guardians will need to nominate on a Google Form that will be sent out next week, which drop off and dismissal point they will use for their children if they are not collecting their child from the classroom at exactly 3.10pm. Your children must be made aware of this by you so that we do not have a lot of confused children.

These points will be appropriately marked with colour coded signs. These will match tags that we will provide for each child to place on their school bags. Each gate will be monitored by a staff member to ensure that children are being collected by their parents, a known adult or are walking home with an older sibling. If you make changes to where you are dropping off or collecting your children, you will need to inform the school to avoid any confusion or errors. All children who are walking home from school must exit through Gate 2.

This is a significant change to our previous process, and we foresee that this will take some time for parents and guardians to adjust. Please be patient with us as we make work to correct any problems or unforeseen consequences of this change.

To be clear, this does not mean that parents and guardians cannot enter the school grounds as was the case during the COVID restrictions. Parents and guardians are still able to come and talk to the class teacher, however, we would request that if you need to have a longer discussion, you contact the teacher in question to make a mutually convenient time to meet. Our teachers will not be able to engage in conversations beyond the 3.10pm dismissal to remain compliant with the new award.

It is important that parents and guardians do not enter the school by other entrances/exits, notably the staff carpark gate on Eumerella Boulevard. This area is not supervised and as this is a staff carpark entry, this is not a safe route for parents and children.

The change award has required schools to make provisions to accommodate the new time in lieu requirements for staff. This has been done through the use of additional student-free days which have been approved by MACS. These days are additional to our usual allotted student free days.

For St Lawrence of Brindisi, this means that school this year for students will finish up a couple of days earlier than usual, on Friday 15 December. This will limit any disruption to students throughout the year and enable our staff to avail themselves of their earned time off during the holiday season, rejuvenating themselves for the upcoming year.

I am letting you know now as I wanted to give you ample time of the new finishing up date to accommodate any changes to your schedules or arrangements at what is a busy time of the year.

We sincerely appreciate your understanding and support in this matter. By prioritising the well-being and work-life balance of our dedicated staff, we are fostering an environment that promotes excellence in teaching and learning.

If you have any questions or concerns about the new enterprise agreement or the revised finishing up date, please do not hesitate to reach out to us.

Thank you for your continued partnership as we strive to provide an outstanding education for our students.


Yours sincerely

Bill Hill



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