As Western Australia experiences unprecedented population growth, we are responding by building new schools and expanding existing schools.
The ongoing investment in schools continues to be a priority with many significant capital works projects either in progress or planned for the future.
More than 300 public schools across the State have benefited from $30 million for maintenance and minor works including roof replacements, classroom refurbishments, toilet upgrades, resurfacing of primary school playgrounds and other minor works. This work was completed in June 2016.
In addition, an extra $15.66 million was spent in 2015-16 on assessment and remediation/replacement of classroom ceilings ($11.40 million), repairs to paving and re-sealing of bitumen play areas ($3 million) and replacement of cable pits and millboard containing asbestos ($1.26 million). More than 320 schools will benefit from these assessments and works. The total spend on school maintenance in 2015-16 was more than $170 million.
Over $50 million will be spent on upgrading public school technology with all public schools’ bandwidth optimised, additional wireless access points installed and more laptops, tablets and other devices for primary students.
Three new primary schools will be built for the start of 2018 – two in the growing southern corridor of Perth in Wandi and Wellard, and one in Margaret River. Four new primary schools opened in 2016 and another four will open in 2017.
Six new secondary schools will be built, two in 2018, three in 2019 and one in 2020. These, like all our secondary schools, are equipped with new technology to enhance learning; and specialist facilities - from science laboratories to dance studios and language centres – to provide vital learning opportunities for students.
Geraldton secondary schooling will be strengthened with John Willcock College and Geraldton Senior College expanding to each cater for students from Years 7 to 12 from 2019. Each school will benefit from improved facilities.
In the northern suburbs, $57.2 million is being invested in stage one of a new secondary school in Yanchep to open in mid-2018 and $4.5 million to upgrade Kinross College. This is in addition to five other secondary schools opening between 2017 and 2020.
Improvements have been made at both Armadale Senior High School and Cecil Andrews College to strengthen secondary schooling in Perth's south eastern corridor. The schools provide better subject choices and more options for young people to pursue tertiary education, further training and employment when they leave school.
Fremantle's new secondary school will open in 2018 for students from Years 7 to 12 providing a high quality, comprehensive education from the moment they arrive to the time they graduate.
Some new schools will also be part of the first WA Schools Public Private Partnership to design, build, finance and maintain new primary and secondary schools.
$1 million will be invested in 2016-17 to install perimeter security fencing at public schools.