Regional offices

The movement towards decentralisation of administrative functions in the NSW Department of Education first received serious consideration in 1938, and in 1948 a pilot scheme was introduced in the Murrumbidgee area. The success of the experiment led to the establishment of other regional offices.

Below is a list of regional and sub-regional offices in NSW from 1948 onward, with details of changes of name where necessary and closing dates.

Year Office/s
1948 Riverina (Murrumbidgee until 1951 and South-Western until 1965)
1952 Hunter (Newcastle until 1976)
Metropolitan West (Sydney (Western) until 1965)
North Coast South Coast (Southern until 1965)
1959 North West
1966 Central Metropolitan
Metropolitan North (North Sydney until 1985)
St George
1968 Metropolitan South-West (Liverpool until 1985)
1978 Penrith Sub-Region, Metropolitan West
1979 Gosford Sub-Region, Metropolitan North
1982 Metropolitan East (formed by the merging of Central Metropolitan and St George Regions)
1986 Gosford and Penrith Sub-Regions abolished
1989 The Schools Renewal (The Scott Report, June 1989) successfully recommended that many administrative responsibilities be devolved to the ten regional offices: Metropolitan East, Metropolitan North, Metropolitan South West, Metropolitan West, Hunter, North Coast, North West, Riverina, South Coast, and Western
1995 Announcement (10 August 1995) of the abolition of all regional offices to be effective by the end of 1996
2004 Ten school regions supported by 78 school education groups (SEGs) and ten TAFE NSW Institutes
2015 From 1st July 2015 school regions were replaced by 4 Operational Directorates: Macquarie Park, Tamworth, Ultimo, Wagga Wagga and 65 Principal Networks. Additionally, the NSW Department of Industry became responsible for government-funded VET, with the NSW Department of Education retaining responsibility for VETiS
2018 At the beginning of term 2, 2018 the organisation of support to public schools was restructured to six Operational Directorates: Metropolitan North, Metropolitan South, Rural North, Rural South and West, Regional North, Regional South, and 110 Principal Networks
2020 From 12 October 2020 the existing 110 principal networks were realigned from their current six operational directorates into eight school performance directorates (Metropolitan North, Metropolitan South, Metropolitan South and West, Regional North, Regional North and West, Regional South, Rural North, Rural South and West) plus the Connected Communities Directorate


  • School operations

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