COVID-19 IMPORTANT INFORMATION

 P&C Association Information Re COVID-19, P&C Federation advises P&C Associations when seeking health related information on the COVID-19 to refer to the Australian Government, NSW Health and the Department of Education websites. For school-specific matters related to COVID-19, P&C Associations should consult with the school Principal.


Annual General Meetings, General Meetings, Special Meetings

Update:  As of Friday 22 May 2020, amendments to the (Model) Prescribed Constitution were published by the Minister in the Education Gazette as 1 of 2020. The prescribed constitution is in reference to:

Section 117 of the Education Act 1990 requires that the model constitution for Parents and Citizens’ associations incorporated under the Federation of Parents and Citizens’ Associations of New South Wales Incorporation Act 1976

10. Holding Meetings and Quorum

  1. Parents and carers of pupils attending the school and citizens within the school community who are not members may attend meetings  of the association but are not entitled to attend meetings of the Executive Committee or subcommittees of the association.
  2. Where the association has a current membership of 50 or more, the quorum at all meetings of that association shall be 10 members.   Where the association has a current membership of less than 50, the quorum shall be set according to the rules of that association but shall not be less than five.
  3. The association will in the usual course hold all meetings of the association at the school or, if the school is not available, at a convenient and suitable location nominated by the Secretary [or, in his or her absence, by another Officer].
  4.  If for any reason a quorum at any meeting convened in accordance with paragraph (c) cannot be formed in accordance with paragraph   (b) and the rules of the association, the association may hold a meeting of the association at 2 or more venues using any technology that gives the members as a whole an opportunity to participate effectively in that meeting.
  5.  In any case in which a meeting of the association is held using technology of the kind referred to in paragraph (d):     
    i. notice of the meeting must specify the date, time and details of the technology needed to participate in the meeting;   
    ii. a quorum must be maintained for the duration of the meeting; 
    iii. any member of the association attending in person or using technology will be taken to be present for the purposes of forming a quorum and for all other purposes; 
    iv. all votes on a resolution must be taken by ballot open to all members and not on a show of hands; and
    v. the President or other presiding Officer appointed to chair the meeting may adjourn the meeting if there is any failure in  technology with a consequence that a resolution cannot be put or the business of the meeting cannot be conducted.

The above changes to claus 10 of the prescribed constitution refers only to P&C Associations Incorporated under this act. 

Note: P&C Associations that are not incorporated remain under the unchanged Standard Constitution. For more information about becoming an incorporated P&C Association, send an email to: mail@pandc.org.au

It is always good practice to refer to your Constitution and your own P&C Association’s by-laws (bylaws cannot contradict the Constitution).

Click here to view your Constitution. Please note that if your P&C Association is incorporated with Fair Trade, you will need to refer to your constitution that is registered with Fair Trade.

What happens if we don’t meet quorum?

No meeting can go ahead if your P&C Association does not meet quorum for whatever reason. Without quorum your P&C Association will not be able to make decisions. If your P&C Association does not meet quorum, you would need to postpone your meetings. Quorum for P&C Associations with 49 financial members or less is 5. Quorum for P&C Associations with 50 financial members or more is 10.

What happens if a P&C Association has to postpone its Annual General Meeting (AGM)?

If your P&C Association needs to postpone its AGM due to lack of quorum or due to the inability to meet face to face, then the current Office Bearers would remain as Office Bearers until such time as the AGM can be held.

What happens if a General Meeting needs to be postponed?

Where a general meeting is postponed, it will mean that no decisions can be made until a meeting can be called that meets the quorum requirement.

The Standard and Prescribed Constitutions require at least one meeting per term.

Can we meet other than face-to face to make decisions?

P&C Associations that are not incorporated  are governed by the Standard Constitution which has no enabler within it that allows for virtual meetings. This includes using postal or electronic means, email circular resolutions, teleconferencing or web-conferencing. Voting can only occur while members are physically present at a properly constituted meeting.

This applies only to Unincorporated P&C Associations decision making processes and meetings.

Note: As stated above for Incorporated P&C Associations an amendment was made to the Prescribed constitution by the minister refer tp Prescribed constitution.

Can we use proxy voting?

No. There is no enabler in the Prescribed or Standard Constitutions that allow P&C Associations to use proxy voting. Proxy voting is where a member of a decision-making body e.g. a current financial member of the P&C Association can delegate his or her voting powers to another person (called the “proxy”) to enable a vote in their absence.

What is the P&C Federation doing to help P&C Associations cope with the COVID-19 pandemic?

P&C Federation are seeking urgent changes to the Standard and Prescribed Constitutions to enable P&C Associations to hold electronic meetings. This requires us to seek the approval from the Minister for Education.

Update:  As of Friday 22 May 2020, amendments to the (Model) Prescribed Constitution were published by the Minister in the Education Gazette as 1 of 2020. The prescribed constitution is in reference to:

Section 117 of the Education Act 1990 requires that the model constitution for Parents and Citizens’ associations incorporated under the Federation of Parents and Citizens’ Associations of New South Wales Incorporation Act 1976

The changes to the prescribed constitution refers only to P&C Associations Incorporated under this act. 

P&C Activities including fundraising

Can our P&C Association continue its activities?

P&C Associations operations allowable within a school environment should still be able to continue to operate at a base level e.g canteen,uniform shop etc. If your P&C Association cannot meet face-to-face for the present, then you will be able to continue with the status quo in terms of paying  creditors. Incorporated P&C Associations are now enabled to host meetings virtually as well as a Hybrid model.

Can we continue to host fundraising events?

Due to the current restrictions, face to face activities should not be taking place.

P&C Federation strongly recommends P&C Associations refer to the Australian Government Department of Health and NSW Health websites for any announcements to ensure the safety of the community.

Possible school closures

What provisions should we be making for a possible school closure

Understand your current financial position and do a cash flow analysis to project how continued operation will impact on financial reserves. Work out how a possible school closure will impact on your financial position and take measures to ensure you could cope with it.

It is important to note that the current situation is everchanging. We strongly recommend and encourage people to keep themselves informed with information from the Government, NSW Health, the Department of Education and your Principal.

 

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P&C Association Information Re COVID-19                          As at: 19    Aug 2020
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