Education Act 2017

Update: 30/11/17

Parliament finished today for the year without approving the Weatherill Government’s new education act.

SAASSO opposed several aspects of the proposed new act.

The current act remains in force.


Update: 28/11/17

Last Three Days Of Parliament.


Parliament rises for the year on Thursday (November 30), meaning the State Government has only three days to pass it’s controversial new Education Act in the upper house.

SAASSO has found support for its concerns from the State Liberals, Australian Conservatives, The Greens, Advance SA & Dignity Party.

With this support, we hope the rights of parents and volunteers will be protected.


Update: 27/11/17

Greens MLC Tammy Franks will move amendments supporting SAASSO’s call for greater protection for parent rights.

Included in the amendments, Ms. Franks will call for the creation of an Education Ombudsman for South Australia. The ombudsman would have royal commission powers and and be able to investigate any matter relating to the provision of education services.

Quoting Ms. Franks amendment: “In performing and exercising functions and powers under this Act, the Education Ombudsman must act independently, impartially and in the public interest, and is not subject to the direction or control of the Minister or Chief Executive“.


Update: 17/11/17

The Australian Conservatives have signalled support for SAASSO’s concerns regarding the threat to the rights of parents and volunteers in the Weatherill Government’s new education act.

In a speech to State Parliament, the Hon Robert Brokenshire said:

“We all want outcomes that are in the best interests of the children. Having said that, we also have a responsibility to the parents who are responsible for those children. That is where some problems lie with this bill, and therefore we have filed some amendments, which I will go into in detail when we sit to debate the bill at the committee stage. We will not oppose the bill. There is no doubt that the Education Act needs modernising from time to time. The South Australian schools association, SAASSO, has expressed quite a lot of concern about this bill. The Australian Conservatives have been through this bill with a fine-toothed comb, and we have concerns about certain aspects of it.”

Update: 10/11/17

Liberals MLC, Rob Lucas has published amendments to be proposed when the new Education Act is debated in the Legislative Council (upper house).

The amendments echo those proposed by Shadow Education Minister, John Gardner in the House of Assembly (lower house) in September.

The liberals amendments address a number of SAASSO’s concerns; removing much of the minister’s power to sack and order Governing Councils, ensuring parents remain the majority and creating the Governing Council legal fund – recommended by the Debelle Royal Commssion.



SAASSO’s opposition to key aspects of the proposed new Education Act, sparked media debate in lead up to the bill being tabled in State Parliament.​

The Advertiser
August 9, 2017
The Advertiser
October 1, 2017
The Advertiser
November 1, 2017
5AA Radio
November 1, 2017
ABC Radio
November 1, 2017









SAASSO’s Submission

In September 2017, SAASSO was shown a draft of the Weatherill Government’s new Education Act, by the State Liberals – who asked for feedback on the new laws governing education in South Australia.

SAASSO had numerous concerns around the areas pertaining to School Governing Councils and the introduction of on-the-spot fines for parents.

Our concerns were included in amendments proposed by the Liberals when the bill was debated in State Parliament’s lower house. Unfortunately, the Weatherill Government agreed to few change in these areas.

The bill then progressed to the state’s upper house. In November, SAASSO made submissions to the cross-bench members of the Legislative Council; asking them to reject fining parents and to protect the rights of public school parents and volunteers.



Education Act Bill 
Current Education Act
Labor Amendments For Legislative Council