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NSW Department of Education Conducted a War Against Small Rural Schools

Sunday October 25, 2015

NSW Greens Legislative Council MP, Dr. John Kaye, has revealed that 36 NSW public schools have been closed under the NSW Coalition Government. This is 71 per cent greater than in any four year period under the previous Labor government since 2001.

In a media release about the report of the Legislative Council Select Committee on the closure of public schools in NSW, Dr Kaye said:

“A National Party Education Minister appears to have allowed his department to go to war against small schools and rural communities.

“Evidence reported to the Committee showed clearly that once a school was considered for closure it was doomed.

“In the last five years, only two of the schools that have gone into the review process have come out intact, while 36 have closed. More than half of the schools that closed in 2015 are to be sold off.

“To add insult to injury, parents have been treated appallingly. The Committee exposed the failure of the Department to act honestly when it had decided to close a school.

“Parents were allowed to believe that they were engaged in a genuine consultation process when in the mind of the Department the outcome was a foregone conclusion.

“Department head Michelle Bruniges insisted that school closure decisions were based entirely on protecting the educational interest of the students.

“The Committee accepted the evidence that challenges the allegation that small schools do not provide quality outcomes.

“The Baird government has lost a key excuse for closing small schools. From now on, the real motivation will be exposed as being purely economic.

“This has always been about a government that does not want to invest in rural and regional communities and that sees only real estate values when it looks at small schools,” Dr Kaye said.


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