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Federation to oppose school closures in Murwillumbah
Members in Murwillumbah are shocked, angry and disappointed at the NSW Government’s surprise announcement to close three out of the four public schools to make way for an amalgamated facility.
Under the plan, the Murwillumbah High School site would be redeveloped and take in students from Wollumbin High School and Murwillumbah and Murwillumbah East public schools.
The Government’s complete failure to consult with staff and parents has caught them completely off guard.
Murwillumbah East Public School Federation Representative Lynda Lamrock said members feel shocked, disappointed and disgusted with the way information has been shared.
“Teachers have voiced their disgust in relation to the fact there was no consultation with staff before this announcement and the total disregard of the community and what they would like,” she said.
Staff at are Wollumbin High School are “absolutely flabbergasted” said Federation Representative Glenn Kaminski.
“Once we had five minutes to digest the announcement and the way the news was delivered [our] feelings quickly turned to anger. It became apparent that the decision had been known for quite some time, and purposely kept from us. The fact we were not consulted at all … or even informed it was a possibility, has many staff feeling undervalued, insignificant and enraged,” he said.
Federation is resolute in our opposition to these closures, said Federation Deputy President Henry Rajendra.
“The temerity of the government to rundown our school buildings for decades and then think we would welcome the closing of the same schools for the sake of an upgrade to another is offensive, divisive and mean,” he said.
“All local public schools need and deserve major building upgrades. Indeed, should the Government take notice of the needs of our community, they would instead be broadening public school provision in Murwillumbah by building public preschools on all existing public primary school sites.”
The plan raises significant concerns about public education funding and provision. “The closure of public schools is a precondition for the government to sell off public land,” Mr Rajendra said.
“This is simply an economies of scale decision that will increase class sizes and cut teacher numbers,” he said. “Teachers support facility upgrades, but not at the expense of closing public schools.”Federation has called on the NSW Government to show decency and respect and immediately halt the project and engage with local parents and teachers before any further action is taken.
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