Valkstone Primary School (10.3.2016)
Written on the 10 March 2016
10 March 2016
GEORGIE CROZIER (LIB - Southern Metropolitan)
My adjournment matter for this evening is for the attention of the Minister for Education.
The action I seek is that the minister commit to provide to the school community of Valkstone Primary School and the residents of Bentleigh electorate the necessary funding to complete the school redevelopment project that the previous coalition government commenced. As we know, there was a significant shortfall in spending on Victorian schools over 11 years of Labor, especially around maintenance issues in schools right across the state.
I would also like to correct the record regarding an adjournment matter raised by the member for Bentleigh in the Legislative Assembly, where he incorrectly stated that no funding was provided to the school. In fact there is a black hole at Valkstone Primary School, which he claims was left by the previous coalition government. I think this is a ridiculous attempt in trying to portray something that actually did not occur. I would like to just state to the member for Bentleigh and to the minister that the other day I went out with the shadow minister to meet with the principal of Valkstone Primary School and the president of the school council to look over the progress of the stage 1 works and the newly developed master plan, which was provided for in the $3.5 million provided by the coalition government.At the time of the funding announcement in 2014 the school was rightly excited about this news and the amount it received. During my recent visit it was outlined to both the shadow minister and me what had commenced under that funding, including the now completed master plan. Consequent future works and some subsequent funding will be required to have those works completed.
I know as a member for Southern Metropolitan Region and I note that Mr Davis is in the house and he would be very well aware of this the electorate of Bentleigh has a growing population and thus has ongoing demands on the education facilities available for students and obviously the whole Bentleigh community. So the action I seek is that the Minister for Education commit to providing the necessary funding for Valkstone Primary School in the May 2016 budget to complete this important project, which actually commenced under the coalition government.
Written Adjournment Responses
Raised with Minister for EducationRaised by Ms Crozier
Raised on 10 March 2016REPLY
I am informed as follows:The Andrews Labor Government is committed to investing in education and school infrastructure, and this has been demonstrated through the allocation of $730 million to school facilities in the 2015-16 State Budget. I was especially pleased to announce that almost $20 million of this amount would be allocated to the local government area of Glen Eira alone.
The funding provided through the State Budget represents a crucial first step in creating the Education State, and the Government will continue to invest in school infrastructure throughout this term of government.State Budget constraints do not allow for all school building projects to be immediately funded, and the needs of all government schools must be balanced and prioritised accordingly.
The Government is aware that schools such as Valkstone Primary School may have capital or maintenance needs, and I acknowledge the challenge this presents. However, it will take time to bring all school facilities, especially older assets, up to a desired standard.
The infrastructure needs of all schools, including Valkstone Primary, will be considered when determining priorities for the 2016-17 State Budget and future budget allocations. We will continue to responsibly balance and prioritise the needs of over 1500 government schools across the state in order to achieve a long-term outcome of great learning environments.