By Renee Bogatko, Image Credit – racorn/123rf.com
After more than a decade of lobbying, Murrumbateman will finally get a primary school!
Funding will be allocated in the upcoming NSW Budget, following growing community calls for Murrumbateman to have its own local school.
It also comes off the back of local enrolment projections and after the ACT tightened its enrolment policies for interstate students.
"A school in Murrumbateman means many children will no longer need to endure long or interstate commutes to the ACT for their education," Member for Goulburn, Pru Goward, said.
“The community has been lobbying for more than a decade and I joined the fight in 2015 - but it took all of us together to achieve this result.”
Ms Goward said she’s thrilled all that hard work is finally paying off.
"Words cannot describe how pleased and proud I am for each and every name collected in favour of this school, especially to the driving force that is Mike Reid," she said.
Treasurer Dominic Perrottet also described the announcement as a great result for the local community.
“Huge infrastructure projects and new state-wide programs get all the headlines on budget day, but our government knows there is nothing more important to a community than the future of its children,” he said.
Shannon Griffiths from the Murrumbateman School Committee said the announcement is long overdue.
“With the imposition of restricted choice of ACT public schools introduced this year, a school in Murrumbateman will provide a more convenient option for young families in the area, and in turn, benefit the greater community (myself included),” she said.
“The establishment of a school in the area will also benefit residents without school-aged children via employment opportunities, availability of a community facility for additional sporting events and facility that could be used for adult education.”
Shannon and husband Anthony have two daughters, 6-year-old Amelia and 3-year-old Sienna.
They built in Murrumbateman 6 years ago when Amelia was just 3 months old.
Schooling wasn’t a concern back then as zoning restrictions, understandably, weren’t on their radar.
“We have been very lucky to secure a spot in our preferred ACT school but friends of ours whom attempted enrolment in the same school the following year had to apply to 3 other schools before settling at a NSW school,” Ms Griffiths said.
“This situation was made increasingly difficult this year when they restricted the choice of ACT schools to just 3 northside schools.”
No high school for Murrumbateman has been announced as yet.