Letter to the editor: Questions over school merger

By Shepparton News

Andrew Bock

I greatly respect Peter Eastaugh and the work he has done for our community.

However, as someone who aims to represent that same community, I feel compelled to respond to his recent letter in these pages.

Dr Eastaugh is entirely correct to point out Greater Shepparton’s sub-par educational outcomes.

I’m sure we all agree that something needs to be done.

What many of us are questioning is why must that ‘‘something’’ requires every student to be shunted around to different campuses for however long it takes to get the Shepp High site ready?

Why must that ‘‘something’’ be to remove choice from families and to warehouse students — especially those with greater needs — into one over-crowded site?

Why is that ‘‘something’’ to apparently lock in this massive disruption before government funding has been allocated and before council has figured out how to deal with the increased traffic volume?

Why are we six months out, without the most important question being answered — how will these proposed changes improve educational outcomes?

Especially given similar amalgamations in Broadmeadows, Dandenong and St Albans resulted in worse outcomes and poorer attendance rates?

Those of us who have made the effort to inform ourselves — as Dr Eastaugh helpfully suggests — have been unable to ascertain answers to these and many other questions, despite our best efforts.

No expert committee or panel of school principals deserves our blind trust.

Our community deserves answers to our legitimate concerns, preferably before the summer holidays.