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Council - Council Induction, Development and Review Procedure

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Section 1 - Purpose / Objectives

(1) Nil

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Section 2 - Scope / Application

(2) Nil

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Section 3 - Definitions

(3) Nil

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Section 4 - Policy Statement

(4) Council Policy

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Section 5 - Procedures

Part A - Induction for members

(5) All new members will normally receive an induction briefing from the Secretary to Council as soon as practicable after appointment. The briefing will emphasise the primary responsibilities of members and their duties as prescribed in legislation and the Council Policy and its associated procedures.

(6) New members will also be given:

  1. copies of all relevant documents, including the most current Annual Report of the University, the Victoria University Act 2010, the Council Policy and Procedures, and the VU Strategic Plan;
  2. campus or site tours of the University (where appropriate);
  3. an introduction to the University's financial status and attendant processes, and to understanding the University's financial accounts.

(7) New members will also be allocated a mentor to assist them in their ongoing Council or Standing Committee activities.

Part B - Professional development for members

Informal professional development activities

(8) Members will receive informal professional development in the course of Council business through such activities as:

  1. an in-house annual training program which will include activities such as seminars on university governance etc;
  2. (for Council members) participation in appropriate Council Committees;
  3. periodic briefings on major developments within the University;
  4. reports from the Vice Chancellor stemming from his/her attendance at external meetings and;
  5. invitations to University functions.

Formal professional development opportunities

(9) Members of Council will be invited to participate in one formal professional development opportunity each year. They will be required to identify the area they would like to build on (develop) via a discussion with the Chancellor.

(10) Members are able to select from the catalogue of delivered programs and study tours sourced by the Council Secretary as well as make application to attend an activity not contained in the catalogue.

(11) The Council Professional Development fund enables each Council member to access $5000 per annum towards professional development.

Administrative requirements

Applications for professional development opportunities

(12) Applications for support to attend relevant professional development activities should be made on the designated form and forwarded to the Council Secretary .

(13) Applications will be reviewed by a panel, convened by the Council Secretary, consisting of:

  1. the Chancellor and/or the Deputy Chancellor; and
  2. at least one more of the Vice-Chancellor or a Chair of a Committee of Council.

(14) The panel will make decisions on such applications based upon:

  1. the appropriateness of the activity given the level of experience and expertise of the member;
  2. the previous professional development activities of the member that have been supported by the Council;
  3. the relevance of the professional development activity to Council's work plan and general objectives.

Travel arrangements

(15) Arrangements for travel would normally be expected to conform to the requirements of the University's Travel Policy .

Reporting and evaluation

(16) Members will be encouraged to share the experiences that they have gained from this participation (activities they have undertaken) with other members of Council.

(17) At the first meeting of Council each year, a report will be submitted outlining the professional development activities undertaken by members the previous year, in order to evaluate the success of the program and recommend any changes to be implemented for the following year.

Part C - Council performance review

(18) In order for Council and its members to properly fulfil their responsibilities according to Section 15 of the Victoria University Act 2010 performance will be regularly reviewed.

(19) Performance review will be managed through a combination of self-review and external review.

Annual self-review

(20) The annual self-review will be coordinated by the Chancellor.

Key Performance Indicators

(21) Performance objectives for Council will be set at the end of each year for the following year.

(22) A report will be prepared and presented by the Chancellor to Council at the beginning of each year assessing the performance of the previous year.

(23) The Chancellor will also conduct an informal review of Councillors and Council performance based on interviews with Councillors. The Chancellor will use these discussions to report back in overall terms to Council at the beginning of each calendar year. Individual feedback to Councillors will be provided in their private meetings with the Chancellor.

(24) The Deputy Chancellor will conduct an informal review of Chancellor performance based on discussion with the Chancellor. The Deputy Chancellor will use these discussions to report back in overall terms to Council at the beginning of each calendar year. Individual feedback to the Chancellor will be provided by the Deputy Chancellor.

External review

(25) Where possible, every two years external reviewers will be engaged to conduct a formal and comprehensive review of Council performance. Individual interviews with Council members will be held as part of the review. There will also be an assessment of individual Councillors based on a survey process.

(26) This external review will be considered by Council and, where appropriate, recommendations (if any) will be implemented. Where appropriate, Council will disclose any insights it has gained from the review and any governance changes it has made as a result.

(27) Council prepares an Annual Report to State Government each year. This is reviewed by the Resources Committee and the Compliance, Audit and Risk Committee, and approved by Council.

Self-review of Standing Committees

(28) The Resources Committee, the Compliance, Audit and Risk Committee, and the Council reflect on the annual performance objectives they set themselves annually.

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Section 6 - Guidelines

(29) Nil