A Matt Guy Liberals and Nationals Government will begin work on providing a second public high school in Shepparton, driven by locals and not by the Department of Education.
From the outset, the amalgamated model which saw four of the region’s schools combine at one campus has been plagued by controversy and the Andrews Labor Government won’t recognise nor address the fact that it has raised considerable challenges for many local students.
Parent groups have continually voiced their anger at the lack of choice available to their children, frustrated that students who are bullied or who are struggling in their environment have no alternatives for their schooling.
That’s why a Matt Guy Government is committed to providing a choice, and working with the community on how that is best delivered.
The Liberals and Nationals are committed to retaining and maintaining the existing campuses so that all options remain viable, and will work with the community to determine a site for the second school and what form it might take.
Whether the second school is a secondary school or a technical school will depend on the outcome of extensive community consultation.
Shadow Minister for Education, David Hodgett, said under the Liberals and Nationals Shepparton would have a choice once again.
“We want to reassure the people of Greater Shepparton that we fundamentally believe in school choice and that we are committed to a process of genuine community consultation to give the community the best outcome for their region’s educational future” Mr Hodgett said.
“It’s not up to politicians or even the Department of Education to choose the second school site. We need to have thorough community and stakeholder consultation so that the best site is selected to facilitate the best outcomes for students in the region.”
Liberal Candidate for Shepparton, Cheryl Hammer, said for parents, students and teachers wanting a better outcome, the choice is clear.
“The Andrews Labor Government, along with Suzanna Sheed, will never admit the single-school public secondary education model they created simply does not work for everyone,” Ms Hammer said.
“One of the big flaws in the development of the GSSC was the lack of genuine community feedback. We need to understand the needs of the community and match these needs with appropriate choices in secondary school options as without it, many of our students will miss out.”
Nationals Candidate for Shepparton, Kim O’Keeffe, said it would provide better outcomes for Shepparton students.
“Shepparton was the guniea pig for this model, and only a Liberals and Nationals government will work with the community to provide a choice for everyone,” Ms O’Keeffe said.
“Students, parents and teachers need confidence in our local education system and working with our community to provide another quality option will help restore that confidence.”