EXCLUSIVE

Halls Head College principal to be reinstated

Bronwyn White has been reinstated as principal of Halls Head College. Photos: File images.
Bronwyn White has been reinstated as principal of Halls Head College. Photos: File images.

UPDATE

The Department of Education has confirmed the reinstatement of Bronwyn White, with workforce executive director Damien Stewart saying she has been "reminded of her obligations."

"A performance issue was identified which prompted the Department to ask Bronwyn White to explain the letter she sent to her school community on April 24," Mr Stewart said.

"Ms White has provided her response and has been reminded of the limits of her authority and obligations as an employee of the Department of Education.

"She will be returning to her role as principal at Halls Head College tomorrow (May 7)."

EARLIER

A Mandurah principal is set to return to work after being stood down by the Department of Education last week.

Halls Head College principal Bronwyn White will once again lead the school from Thursday, May 7.

In an email sent to the college's board obtained by the Mandurah Mail, newly-appointed principal Alen Kursar notified colleagues of Ms White's reinstatement.

"I would like to take this opportunity to inform you that Bronwyn will be back as principal of our school tomorrow," the email read.

"Thank you to all of you for your support of our school. It is greatly appreciated."

Ms White was temporarily stood down from her post last Tuesday night after emailing parents urging them to keep their children home despite the state government's decision to reopen schools.

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The principal wrote to parents on Friday, April 24, saying the school did not have enough space to allow for social distancing should all students return, while also citing a lack of cleaning supplies.

"We simply do not have the physical space required with 1450 students," Ms White wrote.

"Currently we have placed an order for critical and additional cleaning supplied but have been told these are in short supply and at this point it is unlikely these will be available for the commencement of school."

But a full retraction of her letter was sent out the following Tuesday, stating her original email was "not in line with departmental expectations."

The decision to stand her down, pending an investigation, was met with bewilderment from staff.

"Everyone supported her decision and understood her reasons for sending out the email," one member of the school community said.

"She has so much respect in the school community.

"Now everyone has been told not to speak and no one can understand why there is so much secrecy around it."

The Mandurah community gave a strong showing of support for the principal after the Mail broke the story last week.

"As a parent who received this letter I was very appreciative of her clear directions and honesty," one commenter on social media wrote.

"As a former student, I can say for a fact that Bronwyn has always had the best interest of the staff and students at heart," another added.

A petition started online demanding the principal's reinstatement garnered more than 4500 signatures within a week.