Undertaking a planned and collaborative approach to improving the occupational and organisational health of DEECD environments is one of the most significant actions that schools and other DEECD workplaces can be involved in. A successful approach will result in significant and lasting improvements to staff morale as expressed through:
Dealing with organisational health and workplace climate issues is not the subject of a single strategy, approach or program. It will be made up of a series of small, planned and collaborative efforts aimed at achieving a number of different objectives. Those objectives will be mainly locally determined ones and would be identified through staff surveys, internal/external reports, anecdotal feedback and the results of local focus group discussions for instance.
The primary approach to improve workplace climate is to engage employees in looking at the issues through collaboration and consultation. Creative problem solving at a local level will determine many of the solutions needed to address workplace climate issues and the resulting action plan can be included into the school strategic plan and the annual implementation plan.
Under the OHS Act 2004, stress and psychological injuries are recognised as being OHS issues needing to be addressed so improving occupational and organisational health through collaboration and consultation would always be a relevant thing to do and would ideally be occurring on an ongoing basis. If at all possible, action plans addressing issues would be finalised by the end of the school year so that they could be included into the School Strategic Plan and the Annual Implementation Plan at the beginning of the next school year.
The DEECD approach is to encourage workplaces to determine and build their own processes to improve school climate and to that end a number of very useful guidance documents and tools have been developed to assist you with this.
Occupational Health and Safety Act 2004
OHS Advisory Service 1300 074 715