Word on closures delayed in WA
The Western Australian Premier still intends to shut several schools, but has put off revealing which will go until next year at least.
WA Premier Colin Barnett confirmed earlier this year that a number of amalgamations were in the Education Department's budget planning, with several school having to close or merge with others as a result.
Some reports claim Mr Barnett has previously indicated a number of smaller schools in Fremantle and Armadale cannot offer a variety of programmes to their students, and so should be closed or merged.
Both Barnett and WA Education Minister Peter Collier have made visits to sites in Fremantle, but no concrete decisions have been announced yet.
“Looking at the schools, the numbers of students, the condition of the school facilities, what specialist programmes they offer, what the expectations of the local community were,” Barnett said.
“I think it's a proper thing to do when we look at an area of education, that the minister in this case and also myself went out there and visited the four schools. That is merely the start of looking at education in that area.
“But the objective is to improve options and secondary education, in terms of both academic and vocational programmes. And the community of Fremantle is calling for that.
“There'll certainly be a public discussion about what the community wants.”
The closing and amalgamation of some schools will happen during the next four years, as flagged in budgetary planning, but the community consultation mentioned has not yet been given a date.