Schools’ future in doubt

Parents of students enrolled at the Kardinya senior campus were at a community meeting last Wednesday, also attended by Education Minister Peter Collier and Premier Colin Barnett.

The parents are concerned about uncertainty over the future of South Fremantle and Hamilton senior high schools.

At the meeting Mr Collier and Mr Barnett discussed their views on education in the area, including reviewing the results of recent survey on the performance and expectations of the North Lake campus, John Curtin College of the Arts and South Fremantle and Hamilton SHS.

Mr Collier said South Fremantle and Hamilton SHS were operating too small a student body which meant neither was able to provide a wide range of subjects similar to neighbouring larger schools.

Options the State Government is considering include a possible merger of South Fremantle and Hamilton SHS, but Mr Collier said cabinet still had a lot to discuss before a decision could be made, possibly at the end of the year.

High School Options for Fremantle group member Traci Gamblin said the concern about Fremantle’s public secondary schooling was a major issue.

‘It was encouraging to hear the Premier speak so candidly about the serious concerns about the lack of academic options in Fremantle secondary schools,’ she said.

‘It was also clear that the Premier committed the Government to serious investment in the option it chooses, which was very welcome news.

‘However, many people left the meeting with mixed feelings because Mr Collier did not provide any details on the options that government was considering.’

South Fremantle SHS Council chairwoman Rachel Robertson said it was gratifying to see how much support the school had at the meeting.

‘The parent body accepted changes were likely, but we see this as an opportunity,’ she said.