If you’ve read your emails from the AGD recently, or heard rumours around the ol’ celebrancy water cooler, you might be a little confused about what is happening with ongoing professional development in 2021.

Here’s the down-low:

  1. At a basic level, nothing has changed. You still need to complete five hours of ongoing professional development in 2021, as required by the Marriage Regulations 2017: “For the purposes of paragraph 39G(1)(b) of the Act, a marriage celebrant must, in each calendar year, undertake listed professional development activities that take at least 5 hours to complete and include any such activities that are compulsory for the year.”
  2. What has changed is where that five hours comes from.
  3. One hour of professional development will be delivered by the Attorney-General’s Department through your favourite little website, the celebrant self-service portal. Important note on this. If you haven’t logged on in the last 42 days apparently you need to reset and change your password. Because that’s super normal for websites … totally how things happen in the real world …
  4. The one hour of compulsory OPD is apparently live on the AGD website right now, which is possibly quite weird because the OPD topics for the year need to be tabled in parliament and that hasn’t happened yet ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
  5. Four hours need to be sourced from one of the four registered training organisations (RTOs) that have the contract to provide OPD.
  6. Those last four hours can be curated however you like, from different RTOs if you really wanted to get fancy, you just need to do the four hours … and of course the compulsory one hour from the AGD Portal.

So the good news, is that we – the Celebrant Institute – is one of those four RTOs. But sure, you could choose someone else. The thing is, if you know what the phrase à la carte means then consider that a hint towards what we’re launching. The other RTOs are Australian Celebrations, The Gordon TAFE, and Qualtrain.

Any day now we’ll launch We have launched our 2021 OPD program and Celebrant Institute members get a $10 saving. That’s almost a small Big Mac meal. Remember when they were cheaper? Kind of like those childhood memories of a Big Mac meal, OPD 2021 with the Celebrant Institute will honestly be the best you’ve ever had. We can’t wait to share it with you. The professional development, not the burger, you never share a burger.

Here’s the official word from the parents down in Canberra.

From the Attorney-General’s office:

In 2021, as part of the requirement to complete five hours OPD, there will be a one hour compulsory activity that the department will make available at no additional cost to marriage celebrants through the celebrant self-service portal.

In addition to the one hour compulsory activity, marriage celebrants will be able to choose from the list of 2021 elective activities to fulfil the remaining four hours of OPD. The list of 2021 OPD activities will be made available on the OPD page of the department’s website early in 2021.

For information on how to gain access and use the self-service portal, see the fact sheet on the department’s website, ‘Accessing the marriage celebrants self-service portal’ for information on how to gain access and use the portal.

If you have any questions contact us at marriagecelebrantssection@ag.gov.au or 1800 550 343 from 13 October 2020 (Tuesday to Thursday, 10am to 12.30pm and 1pm to 4pm Canberra local time).