Tweed Nationals MP Geoff Provest has responded to claims by Federal Labor MP Justine Elliot claiming that the school amalgamation from four to one in Murwillumbah is a cost cutting exercise as ‘just plain wrong’ and ‘malicious’.
‘The reforms to education in Murwillumbah is a NSW government investment of over $100 million for our local schools,’ Mr Provest said.
‘This new project will deliver more classrooms, better facilities and improved curriculum offerings for students in Murwillumbah.
‘By contrast, Ms Elliot has delivered precisely nothing for the Tweed over the past seven years except scare campaign after scare campaign, all of which have proven to be groundless,’ Mr Provest concluded.
Sold off or not?
Accusations that this is another Liberal-National party land grab have been rejected by Mr Provest who told Echonetdaily that, ‘The intention is to keep this land in public ownership for the community and for community use as stated by the Deputy Premier at the announcement. There will be future consultation to determine what the community wants on these sites.’
He has also reiterated that there will be ‘no loss of permanent positions and consultation is being undertaken with the Teachers Federation. Casual/temporary positions are dependent on enrolments and the discretion of principals.’
However, as one concerned teacher has said in the comments on Echonetdaily, ‘As a teacher that was displaced from the building of the “Super School” at Ballina I can assure the teachers of the schools involved that their lives will be sent into a spiral of uncertainty and anxiety. There will be promises that will not be met.’
Heritage aspects to remain
Concerns raised by locals that the heritage parts of the school would be demolished have also been rejected by Mr Provest who told Echonetdaily that ‘the heritage aspects of the building are extremely important and will be incorporated into the final design’ as had been emphasised during the announcement by the Minister for Education Sarah Mitchell.