The Big Picture evolution
Big Picture reviews operations and governance
The Big Picture network is growing strongly and deeply. All over Australia, we have academies, schools and programs creating powerful learning for many Australian students. We are implementing a new model for schools across the country.
And people are recognising its significance. At a recent Social Ventures Australia Symposium, Valerie Hannon from the Innovation Unit in the UK and Mandy Reynolds-Smith, a Big Picture principal, discussed Big Picture as a transformational reform.
Recent local and international publications are showing how Big Picture has the power to re-engage students in schooling.
Support the Evolution
As the network of schools and scholars evolves in Australia, so too should the BPEA organisation.
So, we have reviewed how the Big Picture Education Australia organisation is supporting the network of change.
We've just had that check-up. Two check ups actually. The news is good.
Big Picture Education Australia has reviewed our operations and governance to make sure we are clear and competent.
We have many supporters and people who rely on us and we want to be accountable to them.
So, with the help of Social Ventures Australia, we undertook two major reviews of our operations (management) and our governance (board) over the past months.
Operations Review Reveals Strong Processes
Big Picture Education Australia operates lightly. We want our resources to flow to the schools and the students. But we also have to be accountable.
The people who support us need to know where the money is spent. The people who work in the schools want to be assured that we are doing the best with what we have.
So, we undertook a review of our operations. We started with our strategic plan, moved on to our accounts and to our biggish ‘to do' list.
The review was positive: We are accounting properly for money and have our plans made clear and plain.
But every organisation can always do better. Our expert reviewer suggested some actions we could take to make the operations more transparent and accountable. And we are doing just that.
We have accepted the recommendations and are implementing them now and in the near future.
You will see evidence of these improved systems in the months and years ahead.
Big Picture Education Australia is growing strongly. It is not just the numbers of schools, parents, students, mentors and students involved although those are growing too. It is the depth of the changes Big Picture is making.
We've come a long way. We've had a Big Picture Education Australia board packed with activists and education experts. They've made strong decisions and they've led from the front.
The board worked hard to support and guide the growing network.
We remain committed to being an organisation run by education professionals for education reform.
But now Big Picture is evolving and so we will change our governance.
We'll recruit an independent chair, increase the proportion of independent directors and strengthen the existing capacity to oversight and assist in managing Big Picture.
We'll strengthen Big Picture's ability to build relationships with business and government.
The Next Challenge
Big Picture Education Australia is a small organisation supporting big change in education.
And we'll soon have new governance and organisational structures to help make that happen.
We hope to stay small, smart and efficient and now also stronger.
It is a big challenge to make Big Picture Education Australia a great support organisation for the network.
We are committed to reviewing our structures and practices regularly. We are committed to learning how best to do our work. And we'll let you know how we are going.