Ask Gen: Clearing up doubts about new super school

By Shepparton News

Set to transform secondary education in the region, the Greater Shepparton College (interim name) continues to divide the community. There are many questions that remain unanswered.

In order to combat this issue, The News has created ‘‘Ask Gen’’, a regular column written by Greater Shepparton College executive principal Genevieve Simson. 

Ms Simson will be answering questions from readers. To submit a question,

I simply want to know where the rest of the money is coming from? Yes you have money to start, but there was no money given in this year’s budget. There are no such promises in parliament to say we will get the money next year or the next. It's all just hope and dreams at moment. You can’t build a $100 million-plus school with only $20 million in the bank.- Brooke O’Toole, Shepparton

Both the Premier and the Minister for Education recently reaffirmed the government’s commitment to fully fund this project through future budgets. The $21.5 million provided for the Shepparton Education Plan through the 2017-18 and 2018-19 State Budgets is an initial investment. The funding provided so far has allowed for the design, development and site preparation works for Greater Shepparton College (interim name) on the Shepparton High site to take place, as well as design and construction of the Integrated Early Learning Centre at Mooroopna Primary School.

Please explain why/how squashing so many children to a relatively small site is going to improve education outcomes?- Andrew Bock, Euroa

The Shepparton High School site is ideal, being the most central location for all young people in the Shepparton and Mooroopna regions, and located easy walking distance from Latrobe University, GoTAFE and the Shepparton township.Its selection followed a site assessment process undertaken by external and independent consultants that looked at location, transport, accessibility, cost and connectivity across a number of sites.The school site is 8.9 ha, easily large enough to accommodate the new secondary school and the largest site of the four site options. The school’s quadrangle will be roughly the size of Shepparton’s Queen’s Park, providing ample outdoor space for students to socialise and relax between classes.   While many of us associate sprawling single storey structures with traditional school sites, the schools being built now look and feel different to those many of us attended as kids. Greater Shepparton College (interim name) will include multi-level buildings that maximise learning space, allowing for more green outdoor space for students to enjoy.The site is big enough to accommodate extensive sporting facilities, including two indoor courts and a number of outdoor courts, as well as the existing oval so students can play their choice of sport. The school will also have an innovation hub for students to gain practical experience in science and robotics, and a state-of-the-art performing arts centre so performing arts students can display their talents.The new school will ensure every student in the Greater Shepparton region has access to the broadest range of subjects, dedicated health and wellbeing teams, and increased training opportunities and education pathways.Professional development for school staff will be a top priority, allowing all students to experience high quality teaching in world-class facilities.


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