State Election: Labor pledges $10 million upgrade to Darling Range Sports College

Mark McGowan talks to past students from the Darling Range Sports College in Forrestfield about the promise of funds for much needed upgrades at the college. Picture: David Baylis d464849
Mark McGowan talks to past students from the Darling Range Sports College in Forrestfield about the promise of funds for much needed upgrades at the college. Picture: David Baylis d464849

OPPOSITION Leader Mark McGowan said the Darling Range Sports College in Forrestfield will receive a $10 million upgrade if Labor wins power in the State Election in March.

He said a complete redesign of the school’s technology centre was long overdue.

The major upgrade funds are for the Home Economics Centre to be upgraded as well.

Darling Range Sports College was opened in 1976.

Forrestfield Labor candidate Stephen Price said the school was more than 40 years old and needed money spent on it to bring it into the modern age.

“Darling Range Sports College needs equipment which caters to the current and future needs of the school,” he said.

“In 2017, the projected enrolment at Darling Range Sports College is expected to reach 1050, so investment in the school will be welcomed by the local community.”

Mr Price said the school’s students were 70 per cent non-ATAR students in Year 12.

Mr McGowan said the funding would be part of Labor’s commitment to ensure schools were equipped to give children a 21st century education.

“We want to ensure all students receive a quality education, no matter where they live.”

Education Minister Peter Collier said that public schools would benefit from the biggest-ever amount of funding this year”: $4.84 billion in 2016-17 and $4.97 billion in 2017-18.

“There are nearly 23,000 public school teachers in classrooms and more than 7500 education assistants supporting students,” Mr Collier said.

The State Government opened four new public primary schools for the new education year, which began last Wednesday.

They were located in Alkimos, Baldivis, Landsdale and Byford.

But opposition education spokeswoman Sue Ellery said the State Government had broken a 2013 election promise to upgrade the Darling Range College and the funding had never materialised.

Darling Range Sports College provides sporting programs in AFL, Athletics, Baseball, Netball, Soccer and Swimming.

The school changed its name from Forrestfield Senior High School in 2008.

Ms Ellery said the Labor Party would fund the school because it badly needed an upgrade, which had also been raised bySenator Glenn Sterle, who sponsors the College’s Sports Achievement Award.

The school population sits at close to 1040 students from Year 7 to Year 12.

Students travel across school districts and from rural regions to participate in the specialist sports program.