Wednesday, July 18, 2012

High School for Coburg!

I welcome the announcement by the Victorian Government to expand Coburg Senior High School to a full year 7 to 12 school in 2015.

I am delighted the Victorian Government has responded to this pressing need. Coburg will finally have the year 7 to 12 high school the community has been crying out for.

I have supported the call for a Coburg Open Entry High School for many years, and have been working to help make this happen.

In February 2008 I arranged a Wills Secondary Education Forum, following the closure of St Joseph’s Secondary College in Pascoe Vale. In the lead up to this meeting and following this meeting, it was made very clear to me that local parents in Coburg and Pascoe Vale wanted a local open entry secondary school.

In September 2010 I made a detailed submission to the Victorian Government’s Secondary School’s Provision Plan for the Coburg Schools Network, which recommended a Coburg Open Entry High School be opened.

I have continuously campaigned for a Coburg High School at every possible opportunity; through my Kodak Redevelopment Submission, and at community and Labor Party forums.

I congratulate Moreland Council, local schools, residents, and in particular Cate Hall and the High School for Coburg Group, all of whom have done a fantastic job to help build support over the years for this important cause.

The evidence on this issue was very clear. The Review commissioned by the Department of Education found there was a shortfall of 301 places in year 7 to year 9 in the area, with the number predicted to rise to 715 by 2021. As I outlined in my submission, Moreland has been experiencing a baby boom, and high population growth is placing record demand on local infrastructure, including the need for a High School.

I support the location of the new Open Entry High School at the Coburg Senior High site off Bell Street, which is located in the heart of the Coburg community, is easily accessible by all forms of transport, and which has the capacity to take in students.

I look forward to working with all concerned in getting the school up and running and making it the success that Coburg and Pascoe Vale parents and their children deserve.

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