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SCHOOL ZONE CONFUSION

Tags: Schools / Shadow Ministry

Categories:

  • By Light Electoral Office
  • May 21, 2020
SCHOOL ZONE CONFUSION

Is the consultation genuine, Minister?

 

The Marshall Liberal Government does not appear to have been upfront with their consultation process for the new Angle Vale B-12 school, raising concerns about how genuine they are about what students and their families think about zoning.

Local Member of Parliament Mr Tony Piccolo led the calls for clarity on how the Government planned to implement the new school zones and the effect it would have on the local community, believing the zone proposal raised more questions than answers.

“Will the new zone split families up?”, he questioned.

“Will changes in transport routes have a negative impact on nearby schools, including the larger Mark Oliphant and Gawler and District Colleges?”

“It appears that consultation with the community only formally commenced on 7 May and will close tomorrow (19 May).”

Despite The Advertiser revealing in early August of 2019 that the Government was moving to compulsorily acquire land near Angle Vale, no form of consultation process had begun by March of this year.

“We are soon to begin consultation on what the new zones will look like for the two new schools that are being built in Aldinga and Angle Vale,” Marshall Liberal Government Education Minister John Gardner said in Parliament on March 5.

According to the Department for Education website, consultation with the wider public on the proposed school zones will close on 19 May 2020.

However, a screenshot taken from the website on 24 April shows that no such offer is advertised at that time, instead stating that feedback would be provided by “education staff at neighbouring schools in Term 2, 2020.”

This means that the Government has provided as little as 12 days for the wider school community to comment on the proposal.

Mr Piccolo said that what appears to be lacking is any plan or proposal to provide public transport to and from the new school.

“If the Minister expects parents to make decisions about which school to send their children to, you would think transport would be an important consideration,” he stated.

“What is the Marshall Liberal Government’s plan for public transport?”

“Some local residents have stated they have not been consulted with and are concerned about potential risks to the school including dust storms and fires.”

“You would think the Government would consult with local Members of Parliament, but both the Member for Taylor, Jon Gee, and myself have not been consulted on a long-term piece of critical infrastructure.”

“The zone announcement appears to be a final decision rather than a draft inviting genuine community participation.”

“During the turbulent time that is the COVID-19 pandemic, you would think that the Marshall Liberal Government would have provided schools and families with more time to consider the proposal, given the shutdowns and restrictions already placed on schools.”

“If the Marshall Liberal Government is genuine about their proposed consultation they would have published their plan.”

“This decision appears to lack transparency and appears to be based on the announce and defend philosophy.”

“As the formal process has now ended, I would encourage concerned people to raise their views with the Member for Taylor’s Office or my office.”


 

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