Melbourne Archdiocese Catholic Schools Ltd (MACS) has been established to assume the governance and operation of Catholic schools in the Archdiocese of Melbourne, Archbishop Peter A Comensoli says.

The change in governance arrangements will see all 293 schools owned by the Archdiocese, its parishes or associations of parishes in the Archdiocese of Melbourne transferred to MACS, which will be responsible for the governance and operation of the schools.

‘Building on the significant legacy of parish priest led and governed schools, MACS will usher in a new era for Catholic education in the Archdiocese’, Archbishop Peter said.

‘Education is integral to the mission of the Catholic Church to proclaim the Good News, and Catholic schooling forms our young people so they may be equipped with the knowledge, skills and hope to live meaningful lives and enrich the world around them.

‘The establishment of MACS is a necessary and constructive change to the operations for schools that not only reflects community expectations about the operations of schools, but keeps our Christ-centred mission at the heart of all we do in Catholic education.’

A Steering Committee was established in November 2019 to consider changes in governance for Melbourne Catholic schools. The Steering Committee has overseen 11 months of significant consultation and deliberation which has culminated in today’s announcement, Archbishop Peter said.

Archbishop Peter has appointed Mr Gerard Dalbosco as the inaugural Chair of MACS to lead this historic new path for Catholic education in Melbourne.

Formerly a senior partner at EY, Mr Dalbosco has had a distinguished career holding several significant leadership roles with EY across Oceania and the Asia-Pacific region. He also has significant governance experience, with current roles including positions with the Committee for Melbourne, Loreto Mandeville Hall Toorak and Newman College.

‘Gerard brings a wealth of strategic vision and governance experience to our efforts’, Archbishop Peter said.

‘I am very pleased to appoint him to this position and excited for what the future holds under his leadership.’

Mr Dalbosco said that he was honoured to be appointed as the inaugural Chair of MACS.

‘Catholic schooling in Melbourne has a profound footprint across our community’, Mr Dalbosco said.

‘We are the largest diocese in Australia and, together with Catholic religious institute schools, provide Catholic education for more than 153,000 students across 335 schools in Victoria, employing over 20,000 teachers and support staff.

‘I look forward to working with Archbishop Peter and key leaders in the Archdiocese to appoint fellow board members as we move the mission of Catholic education in Melbourne forward.’

Mr Dalbosco also said that he was looking forward to helping foster the renewed relationship between parishes and schools.

‘Parishes are the core of Church life in Melbourne’, he said.

‘These communities have not only planned for but, in many cases, built and paid for schools out of their own pockets because of their understanding of the need for Catholic education in the Archdiocese.

‘I am looking forward to MACS working closely with parish priests and parishes, which will continue to be central to the care and education of Catholic school students.’

Archbishop Peter announced that Catholic Education Melbourne, the service arm for Catholic schools in the Archdiocese, will also move to MACS, with recently announced Executive Director of Catholic Education Melbourne, Mr Jim Miles, to serve as MACS Executive Director.

‘The contribution of Catholic education in Melbourne and greater Victoria is an ongoing fruit of the gospel and a gift of Catholic educators to Victorian society’, Archbishop Peter said.

‘Jim will continue to play a critical role, as MACS will build up the leadership, transparency and fairness of that great tradition.

‘I have no doubt that he and Gerard, along with the rest of the MACS board and staff, will continue to ensure that each Catholic school is a valued and essential community in the life of the Catholic Church, and honour the relationships of trust and friendship between school and parish communities.’

MACS will officially begin its governance responsibilities on 1 January 2021.

About Gerard Dalbosco

Formerly a senior partner at EY, Gerard has had a distinguished career, holding several significant leadership roles including Oceania Managing Partner and CEO, Asia Pacific Deputy Managing Partner and Melbourne Managing Partner. This followed an extensive advisory career where he provided strategic, commercial and financial advice across a range of sectors.

Gerard also has significant governance experience, with current roles including Committee for Melbourne (Director, Deputy Chairman and Chair of Finance, Audit & Risk), Loreto Mandeville Hall Toorak (Chair of Board and Former Chair of Finance) and Newman College (Member of Finance Committee).

Previous roles include The National Gallery of Victoria (Chair of Business Advisory Council), Mercy Health and Aged Care (Director and Chair of Finance Committee) and Berry Street Victoria (Director and Member of Finance Committee).

Gerard is a Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in Australia and a Fellow of the Financial Services Institute of Australasia.

For more information, please call Michael Pountney, Acting Assistant Director, Enterprise Services, on 0409 860 884 or mpountney@cem.edu.au.

Further information about the transition of governance arrangements for Melbourne Catholic schools can be found at www.governance.melbourne.