Member for Narracan Gary Blackwood has called on the Andrews Government to live up to its slogan of building an education state and fund much needed upgrades of schools across the Narracan electorate in the 2016-17 State Budget.
‘The Andrews Labor Government is touting itself as an education Government; however, schools right across the Narracan electorate have expressed their frustration, with no major investment in infrastructure at any school locally,’ Mr Blackwood said.
Mr Blackwood highlighted four major primary and secondary schools which are in urgent need of upgrade or modernisation and said local students deserved funding to ensure they had the best facilities available for their education.
‘The four schools in question are Warragul Regional College, Neerim District Secondary College, Trafalgar High School and Moe Albert Street Primary School,’ Mr Blackwood said.
‘All of these schools require significant funding for upgrades to ensure students have the best facilities possible for their education.
Population growth across the Narracan electorate is expect to boom in the coming decade and investment now will mean schools have the facilities they need to meet the growing demand in both primary and secondary education.
‘A major investment is needed to deliver critical upgrades to meet the needs of current students and prepare for the rapid growth in population that will see student numbers rise significantly in the near future.
‘Warragul Regional College in many areas is unchanged from when I attended it in 1969.
‘Trafalgar High School has seen investment over the past decade; however, it still requires funding to complete a final stage which will help deliver the best facilities possible for students.
‘Trafalgar High School has a tremendous reputation for delivering an accelerated learning program and around 200 students travel from the Latrobe Valley by train each day to attend Trafalgar High School.
Mr Blackwood said the Victorian Coalition had delivered a range of investment at local schools in Government and committed to a further $15 million in upgrades as part of the 2014 election but that nothing had been heard from the Andrews Labor Government on local education since coming to office.
‘The Victorian Coalition delivered a $300,000 science wing to Neerim District Secondary College in 2013, and now the school needs major investment in classroom upgrades.
‘Moe Albert Street Primary School requires not only a modernisation program but also basic security fencing to protect the grounds from vandalism and trespass, which have been a major headache for the school.
‘I call on the Minister to prove to the people of Narracan that it is not just spin when he claims to be intent on making Victoria the education state and provide funding in this year’s budget for the schools in my electorate,’ Mr Blackwood said.