New high school to bring Coburg community together

It is almost ten months since Minister Dixon issued his July 18 Press Release announcing the decision to expand Coburg Senior High (CSHS) in 2015. "This is an excellent outcome for the Coburg community," Mr Dixon said.

"Having a high school in the heart of Coburg will better support the community's long-term education needs. Expanding Coburg Senior High School is the logical choice for a new school, as it is in an ideal location, already has some of the necessary facilities and has access to a host of nearby sport and recreation areas."

The community of Coburg and surrounding areas greeted Minister Dixon’s announcement with great joy, relief and enthusiasm. Tours of CSHS for parents and students commencing Year 7 in 2013 have been recently announced and promise to be very well attended.

Minister Dixon also said the Department of Education and Early Childhood Development (DEECD) would work closely with the school and the local community to ensure the expanded school meets the needs of the community. "This is a big undertaking and I have asked the Department to begin consulting with the school and community to map out what the new school will look like," Mr Dixon said.

In term three 2012, HSC were invited to nominate two working party members to be part of a consultation subcommittee run by Coburg Senior High. The subcommittee first met in mid December and has met once since.
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Late in 2012, in response to HSC's concern about the lack of action on the Minister's July announcement, the DEECD Partnerships Division of the Office of Government Schools advised HSC that the DEECD North Western Victorian Region, would begin serious planning in January 2013 - once positions were filled after major structural change. They said the Region would support the planning and community consultation for the year 7-12 project at CSHS. However in February 2013 HSC plus a director and manager from Moreland Council, met with the new Regional Director who informed us that the project would be managed entirely by the CSHS governing board.

Under advice from the Regional Director, who couldn't answer HSC’s questions about the project timelines, HSC wrote to the CSHS governing board members and principal in March 2013 asking them to outline the project timeline and advisory committees relating to the expansion of the school in 2015 with particular reference to curriculum, school naming and facilities planning. A response was not received and in May 2013, HSC wrote to Minister Dixon once again asking about this and requesting a clear timeline regarding consultation, planning, funding and refurbishment works.

In addition to the above meetings and letters, HSC have also:
  • Had  a second meeting with Regional Director Jeanette Nagorcka.
  • Met with the Moreland Mayor and Director Socila Development Moreland Council.
  • Spoken to Craig Ondarchie Liberal MLA Northern Metropolitan Region.
The expansion and refurbishment of Coburg Senior High School does not appear to be in 2013-14 State Government budget. The DEECD assured HSC last year that the timeline would still be workable if funding for Capital Works wasn’t in the budget until 2014-15 as all planning and design work could be done with out specific budget allocation.

HSC strongly concurs with the words of Minister Dixon in The Age on 07 April 2013 “we want schools to really reflect their community and meet the needs of the local community” HSC believes that the DEECD's community consultation needs to be carried out in a broad and transparent fashion and fully utilised to shape an offering which needs to be finalised by the end of 2013 so that everything is in place for Year 7 enrolments in early 2014 to commence high school in 2015. Here in Coburg it is nearly ten months since the decision to expand Coburg Senior High was announced by Minister Dixon and the community is still looking forward to giving their ideas for the expanded Coburg Senior High.

2 comments:

  1. I have a daughter due to start high school in 2015 - this would be our closest school - i am booked for the tour on May 15th .. Come on all parties and get this happening for the kids that are staring in 2015 they are excited that they can attend a local school together - please dont let them down - HSC you guys do a great job thank you - Lee from Coburg

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    1. High School for CoburgMay 21, 2013 at 8:56 PM

      Thanks for your lovely words Lee. This is what it's all about - local kids and families excited about attending a local school!

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