HSC submitted a detailed Victorian budget submission (which you can view here) calling for a Year 7 intake in 2012 and the local Member for Pascoe Vale, Christine Campbell MP has called for a Year 7 intake in 2011. Both calls have gone unheeded. That there has been no provision for an open entry secondary school for Coburg and surrounding communities in the State Budget comes as no surprise to High School for Coburg. (You can view the Treasury response to our budget submission here.)
“It’s disappointing of course,” said Cate Hall, “but we aren’t going away. This issue is just too important for local families and children to let it rest now.”
And there was plenty of education spending to go round. Labor committed hundreds of millions of dollars of state money to school buildings, all very welcome and appreciated but Coburg doesn’t even have a school. And that spending will be on top of the federal money expected to come next week.
“On top of the sham ‘taskforce’ that is being set up to look at this critical issue, it’s no surprise to find that Coburg has been neglected yet again,” said Hall. “This was the perfect opportunity for vision and an innovative whole of government approach to the issue of lack of secondary education provision for the greater Coburg community.”
DEECD spent over $4 million on the Shine media campaign, enough to fund around half an open entry high school. This begs the question – what is more important – education or telling everyone about it?