News

CEO's Perspective - Three Months In

PMSA Board News

Posted 22/11/2018

Commencing in her role three months ago and following recent public discussion on the PMSA’s incorporation structure, new Chief Executive Officer Sharon Callister is pleased to provide her perspective and some background information.

Letters Patent
The PMSA was incorporated under Letters Patent on 28 June 1918 in the same way most not-for-profit organisations were at that time. About 650 Australian organisations are still incorporated by Letters Patent including churches, schools and charities.

Sharon said the PMSA has recently committed to review the incorporation structure in the future, but Letters Patent does not currently restrict the organisation's transparency.

“Organisations can be fully transparent and operate under a modern governance structure and remain incorporated under Letters Patent,” Sharon said.

She said that although examining models of incorporation was outside the scope of the recent governance review (which sought extensive feedback from stakeholders and school communities), the PMSA has voluntarily committed to review the incorporation structure.

“This process is complex, will take time and any change also requires agreement from both the Presbyterian and Uniting Churches.

“At no time have we committed to timing on this review of our structure. Our current focus and priority is to continue to implement the many governance reforms and continue undertake regular organisational roles.

“Any claims that the PMSA is in breach of charitable law and our structure is illegal are simply untrue,” she said.

Strategic Plan
The PMSA is also in the final stages of developing a Strategic Plan for 2019-2023 which will be launched early in the New Year.

“As the governing body of four schools, our role is to ensure the long term prosperity, sustainability and performance of our schools. This plan reflects on today’s challenges and highlights initiatives to anticipate future change,” said Sharon.

Building trust
Sharon has strong thoughts on building organisational trust that reflect modern research where organisations must demonstrate honesty, care, accountability and capability.

“The PMSA is demonstrating this change. In addition to my newly formed role as CEO, the board has seven new board members with strong skills, a solid modern governance reform plan, and new Corporate Office staff working extremely hard to implement the governance reforms.

“The PMSA has apologised for the issues that caused frustration and concern in 2017. On behalf of the PMSA, I am sorry that there is still hurt among a small group of the school community. I would like to assure everyone that the organisation is truly committed to a modern governance structure.

“We are working tirelessly to implement reform that will deliver accountability and transparency and we are excited by our progress. Much of the work at this stage is behind the scenes and we look forward to providing an update shortly.”

Sharon has a track record in organisational change and culture development, building relationships and trust, as well as finance and operational management.

She has been working to build solid relationships with key stakeholders to effectively lead the PMSA through the next phase of continuous improvement and change.”

In addition, Sharon said Facebook comments have been reopened on the PMSA page.

If anyone would like to speak with or meet Sharon personally, please contact her at the PMSA Corporate Office on (07) 3371 0709, email communications@pmsa-schools.edu.au or Messenger.