Thursday, 31 July 2014 14:37

Pledge to finish college plans

by Amy Hume

STAGE four building works of Wallan Secondary College will begin if Labor wins the November state election.

The Opposition has promised $5 million to the college towards completion of the final buildings, which includes new classrooms for senior students and amenities.

The news was met with excitement from WSC staff and students who have been waiting for this moment since the school first opened in 2006.

“Students are making use of what they’ve got but it’s not a very nice space,” Acting Principal Sally Lasslett said.

“(The stage four development) is about finishing what was started. We’d like to see it complete.”

The proposed development includes a year 11 and 12 learning wing which will incorporate classrooms for the school’s VCE, VCAL and VET (trade) programs.

It will also replace the portables that now act as a year 12 common room, a staff office, locker bay area and classrooms when necessary.

Students and teachers have experienced problems with heating and cooling in the portables as well as issues with a leaking roof, electricity and data connection.

The school now has about 560 students with 620 students predicted for next year.

“It’s our aim to replace all portables with buildings,” Ms Lasslett said.

“We’d also like to include a rugby field (in the next stage of development) which could be used by the wider community.”

The possibility of a rugby field was also discussed as part of the development, to accommodate for the sport’s growing popularity among students and within the community.

People from Wallan and surrounding towns have to travel as far as Sunbury and Craigieburn to play rugby with no closer facilities available.

Joined by Shadow Minister for Education James Merlino and Member for Yan Yean Danielle Green, Opposition Leader Daniel Andrews toured the school last Tuesday to understand its needs.

“If you have half a school, you only have half an education,” Mr Andrews said.

“Only Labor will put our kids first and get these schools finished.”

On the same day, Mr Andrews pledged a further $3M for Hazel Glen College to complete the school’s facilities to include year 11 and 12, which was supported by Ms Green and Mr Merlino.

“Local parents deserve certainty – not just about the future of their community, but the future of their kids,” Ms Green said.

“These are two proud, growing schools and Labor’s plans will help them do so much more.”

The state election will be held on Saturday, November 29.