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In two to three sentences, briefly describe the issue. What is being asked for? And to do what
• What, briefly, is the background to this request for a policy or policy change? What positions have the major stake-holders taken? Who is in favour of this policy or policy change, and who is against it, and why? What is the current state of the debate? And why is this a good time to act?
• This section should occupy no more than 10-15 lines.
• Here, you want to provide 5-7 bullet points with key facts that the Minister needs to know in order to make a prudent decision. For example, what is the measure likely to cost? What is it expected to achieve for that money? How will this policy relate to existing government policies (i.e., does it complement them or appear to run counter to them)? What information would be desirable but is lacking?
• Again, we are looking for 5-7 bullet points describing the positive or negative policy considerations regarding the proposal. Does this proposal have sufficient accountability measures built in? Is this policy likely to be supported or opposed by other government departments? Can the policy be implemented in the time-frame and within the cost guidelines being proposed? Is it likely to achieve the stated outcomes?
• If the proposal requires some form of partnership with an external body (say, school boards, teachers, community groups, municipalities, etc), is it likely that the government will have a reliable and cooperative partner? Will that partner be able to deliver on its part of the policy?
• What has been the result of other policy initiatives in this area? Are we doing more of the same things that didn’t work before? Is this policy sufficiently different (or is the external situation sufficiently changed) that we think it will work better this time?.
• Is the money available, and will it be sufficient to ensure success?
• Does this policy have to be adopted now, or can it wait further developments? If so, should it wait?
• Here you want to include 2 to 3 bullet points offering political advice. How will your government benefit from proceeding? What will you lose if you don’t act or don’t act now? Who are the political winners and losers? The Minister wants to be re-elected (He/she remembers the sad story of Jane Purves); how will this policy help the Minister and the Premier politically?
• Here you want 2 to 3 bullet points summarizing your recommendation, perhaps recommending proceeding with all or part of the policy plan, perhaps rejecting one part or delaying another.