Coffee Chat with Cindy: Coburg High parents talk funding needs

As we know, education funding is a key issue in the upcoming state election. This is an opportunity for current and future Coburg High School parents and community to discuss our school's needs with the local Labor candidate for Brunswick, Cindy O'Connor.

Come and join us at Newlands Neighbourhood House, 20 Murray Rd, Coburg North, this Saturday at 10 am. We’ll have some coffee for you and there is a rumour of muffins.

And here's a link to the Facebook event, please feel free to share.

New year 7 class at Coburg High School

Last Thursday 164 students, the inaugural year 7 class arrived to join Coburg High's first Year 7 intake. An exciting and extremely gratifying moment for our whole community. We wouldn't have had this day, this result, this beginning of a public year 7-12 school in Coburg if it hadn't been for the hard fought campaign from High School for Coburg and the broader community. Up until this time, neither Coburg nor Preston, the most populous suburbs in Moreland and Darebin, had a 7-12 public high school. Now we have a high school in Coburg!

HSC would like to thank Don and the staff for all the hard work getting the school ready for Coburg High's inaugural Year 7 intake. This has been a huge undertaking over a relatively short period of time, and for which the community is very grateful.

Check out The Age article, New year 7 class to 'rock' Coburg High School, which also contains a wonderful video of the first day.

We were thrilled to see Don talking so much about active transport in the video! A key plank of HSC's argument for a school was that local provision enables active transport and all it's concomitant benefits. HSC are working productively to bring the the school, Moreland BUG, Moreland Council and Ride2School together to help grow the bike program at Coburg High.

Tara -  photo credit Wendy Dun
It was the "best day ever" according to Tara and her friends.

Steps towards a Coburg Year 7 in 2015

This year, on the first day of second term, Year 6/7 Transition forms went out to families with a Coburg option for the first time since Moreland City College closed.  Coburg gets its own nearest school secondary school boundary which certainly looks like it should always have been there. You can view the map at this link but if you want to see the finer detail, you'll need to download it. Surrounding school boundaries have also been redrawn.
Our community has embraced the Coburg Junior option, turning up in massive numbers to school tours and responding with enthusiasm and excitement.
  • At the end of last year, the December 10 evening tour and BBQ was attended by over 260 parents and students. 
  • On March 27 over 430 families attended two school tours
  • In April and May eight group tours over three days were nearly booked out. More tours were added for 5 and 9 May 
You can register for future tours of Coburg Junior High here.

Even before the funding had been confirmed, over 90 students had already filled in the early enrolment form. When the funding for the Coburg Junior High building works was announced on Facebook, there was a huge response from the community: 95 likes on that post in one evening and many comments expressing excitement and relief! The Coburg Senior High principal, Don Collins, and staff continue to formulate the Coburg Junior offering and the community likes what they learn about it! The Coburg Junior will have some uniform items and according to Don many of the seniors also want to get the jacket!

Work on the building design is well under way and there is quite a lot of information on Coburg Junior website.  Other useful parts of the Coburg Junior website include:
  • FAQ - lots of general information
  • Curriculum - information about subjects taught and educational philosophy
  • Information - an overview of what Coburg Junior High will be offering
There is also a Coburg Junior High Facebook page.

Reports coming in from local parents indicate there have been many transition forms handed in with Coburg Junior as first choice! Congratulations and thank you to the principal and staff of Coburg Senior High for the work in planning Coburg Junior. We are excited about promoting and continuing to help build community around our great local high school!


Minister for Education Martin Dixon  announced today, Monday 5 May 2014, $3.5 million in capital funding to expand Coburg Senior High School into a full 7-12 secondary school. Here is the Premier's press release with all the details.

"This is a welcome announcement for the community, that will provide high quality facilities to current and future students and the Coburg community," Mr Dixon said. Craig Ondarchie MLC also welcomed the announcement, and thanked the community for their commitment to local education.

Six years after beginning to push for this, and following on from Minister Dixon's 2012 decision, we now know it is really happening!

High School for Coburg would like to thank Minister Dixon for listening to our community and recognising the case for a school. We thank him for taking politics out of the equation, and for making the right decision and following through on it. Minister Dixon also did the right thing in listening to us when we explained why our families really needed to know before budget day whether the funding was secure.

The funding announcement has been covered in the following media:
And when the funding was announced, the most common response from parents was - phew!!!

Parents and students can now tour the school and place it as number one on the transition form safe in the knowledge that Coburg Junior High is a fully funded option for 2015.

HSC would also like to give a heartfelt thanks to our community including: working group members, champions at individual primary schools, principals and school councils who wrote letters of support, families who showed their support in many different ways, Moreland City Council who were represented at most of our important meetings over the years, and businesses that wrote in support and/or pledged to our HSC Civic Fund. This result would not have happened if you hadn't been there to help us show the need and support for a 7-12 school in Coburg!

Along with the huge numbers of other families that have visited the school, and the 90 students who had already pre-enrolled before the funding announcement, we are excited about what will be on offer at Coburg Junior High and look forward to seeing the extended and refurbished buildings in 2015.

Coburg Senior High School expansion: Tour Tuesday 10 December at 6pm (with Free BBQ) and Principal's Progress Report

Here in Coburg a local year seven transition option in 2015 is getting much closer to a reality!

High School for Coburg continue to work with the Coburg Senior High School (CSHS) - attending CSHS Community Consultation Subcommittee meetings and assisting with promotion. For example we were able to help the CSHS get a story in this week's  Moreland Leader, page 11 of the 2 Dec issue to promote the upcoming 10 Dec tour and report on recent progress. A great result!

If you are interested in Coburg High as a Year 7 option from 2015  please consider coming to the tour on Tuesday 10 Dec at 6 pm. There will be a free BBQ provided - including salad and veggie burgers and the school cafe will be open for coffee and drinks.

For full information on progress with the expansion of the school  and to register for the tour, please follow the link to the update from principal Don Collins on the school website:

An excerpt from the post is as follows:
It is pleasing to report that the Master Planning for Coburg Junior is progressing well. We are on target to have building design and curriculum development in sufficient shape to share at the next CJHS Tour ~ which will be on Tuesday December 10 at 6pm.
The evening will commence at 6pm with a free BBQ outside our cafe (Bytes Café). Sausages, (we only ever use halal meat.) veggie burgers and salad will be provided. Bytes Café will be selling coffee and other drinks during this time. This event will run for approximately 90 mins during which time we will be sharing information on curriculum and organisational elements, facilities development and invite discussion around elements such as uniform, language, technology and sustainability.
Please register your attendance at:
Coburg Junior HS Tour
Baade-Harbour Australia (BHA) have been appointed as architects for this next stage of development. With a wealth of knowledge about our site having been responsible for the previous two stages, BHA is well placed to transform the existing spaces into learning spaces to facilitate thinking and learning in a range of ways.

Tara's story

I am in Grade 5 this year and we live in Coburg North. Next year I will choose my Secondary School. I am really excited about going to Coburg High School which will be accepting Year 7 students from 2015.
I am delighted about having a school which I can walk to and is so close to home. I think it’s cool that I can also ride my bike along the bike track too. I know there will be a few friends going to Coburg High and hopefully lots more might attend from my school but I don’t know yet…  I really hope they will be in my class!
And the big question I ask myself is what will the new High School be like? Well, I am hoping that there will be a huge library because I love reading and I am hoping for big traditional classrooms. I feel more comfortable in an enclosed area. I feel many other Primary students probably feel the same way as we are all  used to them.
Then, the question about teachers - I hope they are nice teachers - inspirational and playful too so learning can be fun.
There are some cool subjects that I am looking forward to like Cooking and all the Arts. I hope I may use some professional equipment to make movies. I love being behind the camera and directing scenes and performances.
I am not particularly keen on using computers all the time in the classroom because I am much faster at writing but least I will have to learn to type faster!  However, I would be delighted  to have my own laptop if possible. I think laptops are faster to download than iPads.
I think it’s fantastic that there is a real Cafeteria at the school as there isn’t one at my Primary School.
The other thing I hope for is that there is a uniform as it will be easier not to choose different clothes every day and nobody can tease anyone about their clothes.