August 7, 2014  |  Members Statements

Caroline Springs schools

I rise today to call on the Minister for Education to commit funds to the development and construction of a second high school in the suburb of Caroline Springs in my electorate. One of the most important issues for families who live in the area, as well as those considering moving into our community, is the quality of the education their children will receive.

Currently Caroline Springs is serviced by three P-9 schools that feed into Lakeview Senior College for years 10 to 12. However, given the radical growth that has occurred in Melbourne’s west in Caroline Springs, Taylors Hill, Derrimut, Burnside and out to Melton, this is not an adequate or sustainable situation for families in the west. Year 10 is a very important year for students, who by then have established friendship groups and support networks.

To rip a child away from their friends at this age is deeply traumatising and upsetting for both family and child. Yet this is what is happening, with many children forced away from their friends because of a ‘We are full’ sign at the front door. Previously admission to any of the Caroline Springs P-9 schools guaranteed entry into the senior school. However, today it does not.

The recent state electoral boundary redistribution created an extra seat in Melbourne’s west. The population is booming, but our schools are struggling to keep up. Future development earmarked for Kororoit highlights the urgent need to build education infrastructure now. We need a new, modern, world-class high school in Caroline Springs or the immediate region to ensure that we can cater for the needs of the community so that they are properly prepared for the booming growth happening around them. I call on the minister to commit to the west and to put community need ahead of marginal seat politics this November.

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