Christian Education National

National Board

The national board of Christian Education National Ltd comprises eight members nominated and elected by member associations from around Australia. Elections take place every year at the annual general meeting.  Board members serve for a three year term and are eligible to stand for a further two terms.

The board of Christian Education National Ltd is committed to the highest standards of corporate governance in its own deliberations and as a model for boards of member associations. A concise guide to the roles and duties of directors of a charitable public company limited by guarantee is outlined in the resources section of this website.

Board members of Christian Education National schools who have registered for the website may also access the Board Members Handbook in the resources section of this website.


Jack Mechielsen - President, Chairman

Jack Mechielsen has served for 7 years as Chief Executive Officer, Northern Territory Christian Schools Association. 

Before taking up his present position he was executive director of CPCS for more than thirteen years and prior to this he was principal of Marrara Christian School in Darwin. Between 1973 and 1982 Jack was founding principal of Mt Evelyn Christian School in Victoria.

Jack is married to Marlene and has two adult children and two adult children in law.  Jack is passionate about applying the Christian faith to teaching, learning care and organisational management.

Ric Petersen - Vice President, Chairman

Ric has been involved in Christian Education National schools as a teacher and parent for over twenty one years.  Both his sons were educated at CEN schools.

He has been the Principal at Calvin Secondary School for the past eleven years.  Prior to this he was Dean of Studies at Kingsway Christian College.

He and his wife worship at the Christian Reformed Church Kingston where Ric serves as the Chairman of Elders.

Ric was elected to the Board in 2006 and is currently the Vice President of the CEN Board and is the Chairman of the Council of the National Institute for Christian Education, Chairman of the Association of Independent Schools Tasmania (AIST) School to Work Committee, Chairman of the AIST Education Sub Committee, Chairman of the Tasmanian CEN Principals’ Association, CEN principal delegate on the Tasmanian Qualifications Authority Principals Reference Group and serves on the executive of the CEN State Council of Tasmania.

David Grey - Treasurer

David has been involved with Leighland Christian School in Tasmanian for twenty years, fourteen years working as the Business Manager.   He is a director on three boards of Christian organisations in Tasmania; Christian Youth Camping, Family Support Services and Suicide Prevention.  He currently serves as the treasurer for the Association of Independent Schools Tasmania and is also the current chairman of the M&F Committee for CEN.  David is also a national director for the Association of School Business Administrators (ASBA Ltd) and is the President of ASBA Tasmania. 

David and his wife Joanne have four sons.  They attend Romaine Park Christian Centre in Burnie where they have fellowshipped for twenty years.

Yvonne Bradley - Company secretary

Yvonne has been involved in Christian Education since 1983 when she joined the staff of Donvale Christian College. She became Head of Secondary school in 1986 and was appointed Principal of Donvale in 1991. She retired from that position at the end of 2008.

While Principal, Yvonne had responsibility for presenting the annual Developing Leaders Conference on behalf of CEN and she remains a CEN Councillor on the AACS Council.

Married to Gary for 42 years with 2 adult children and 1 grandchild.

Hugh Bryant-Parson - Director

Hugh has been married to Marion for over 33 years and they became association members in 1982 prior to the birth of their first child. Their daughters have all attended Plenty Valley Christian College, in Victoria, where Hugh has been a board member of Plenty Valley for about 14 years.

He is an IT Technical Manager, with recent experience as a Senior Project Manager at Hewlett Packard Computers on large and medium technical and business process improvement projects, within an international customer support environment. Hugh believes that our worldview must be shaped by the scriptures and this must impact the life of our associations and school communities.

Anne Baker - Director

Anne is married to Chris and has 2 wonderful children. She became involved in Christian schooling when her eldest began school at Covenant Christian School in Belrose, and Chris and Anne became members of the school association. As well as being very involved in many areas of the school community, Anne became a member of the Covenant Christian School board. Anne is now Chair of the CEN NSW Executive Council.

Anne's family attends All Saint’s Anglican Church in Balgowlah and over the years she has run the Children’s Ministry, helped lead at children’s holiday clubs and camps and been camp mum for the teenage/young adults group at Soul Survivor Youth Conferences.

John de Jong - Director 

John has been married to Elly for over 22 years and they have four daughters. He has been passionate about, and involved in, Christian education for over 16 years. He believes God requires us as parents to be actively involved in our children’s education which should be integrated with our Biblical world view, and we should aim to ensure that our children are equipped to live in the world as salt and light for Jesus Christ.

Peter Burton - Director

Peter has been involved in education for 28 years, 11 years in Western Australian state schools and the past 17 years in Christian education. He is currently the principal of Kingsway Christian College, and prior to this was the principal of Winthrop Baptist College.

Peter is married to Jenny who is also involved in Christian education,  they have three sons and worship at Riverview Church.


Sue Goudswaard - Director

Sue has been involved in Christian Education since 1975 when she was a student at Donvale Christian School.  In 1982 she finished her schooling at Mount Evelyn Christian School (MECS).  Sue married her high school sweetheart, Steve Goudswaard and in 1991 they both became Association members of MECS.  Having spent 15 years abroad, Steve and Sue returned to Australia so that their 2 delightful children could grow up part of the MECS community.  Sue has served on the MECS Board for 5 years and is currently the Board Chair.

Sue is a Director of a Registered Training Organisation, a faithful supporter of Parent Governance and a firm believer in our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ.

The national board maintains a number of standing committees:

  • Publications
  • Management and Finance (which also administers the Building Fund)
  • Membership
  • State Councils
Representation to Federal Government on behalf of our schools is carried out by the Australian Association of Christian Schools. For more information please go to
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