Business Managers | Kirwan State High School
‘Business Managers’ in schools provide a critical service in a world where facilities management, human resources skills, marketing and finance finesse are becoming increasingly important.
“The role of a Business Manager is very diverse,” say Sandy Jarrett and Mandy Blackford, who are both Business Managers at Kirwan State High School. “We provide leadership and management in the areas of finance (budgeting and forecasting), facilities (building maintenance / new projects), marketing and human resources. We’re very fortunate to have Executive Principal Meredith Wenta, who is a visionary leader. She provides an organisational structure for our school support staff that allows for staff to gain expertise in their focus areas, allowing real opportunities for career progression.”
The Kirwan High community engaged in an Appreciative Inquiry process to create a Master Plan in order to prioritise areas for restructure and refurbishment. Students, staff, parents and community members were invited to have input into this process.
“Our school is very proactive, with a shared vision to create world-class facilities for our students that provide an environment to learn and experience education at a world-class level,” Sandy says.
“We provide leadership and management in the areas of finance, facilities and human resources.”
After several years raising her children, Sandy re-entered the workforce at a time when the electronic age was just starting to change office environments. She was employed as a public servant in the front office of a high school before becoming a Business Manager (on training wheels) in 2003.
“I made a huge leap to join the Kirwan High family in 2010, which provided me with the opportunity to grow professionally, particularly networking at a state level to improve change processes and outcomes for staff and facilities,” Sandy says.
Mandy became a Business Manager in 2006 at Aitkenvale State School and throughout this time undertook projects within the Facility Department of DET.
“Last year I joined the aspirational Kirwan High family where we celebrate success with our students, families and staff at every opportunity with enormous pride,” Mandy says.
“We believe that when we work collaboratively we can achieve remarkable results.”