From The Archives

$3 million school boost

By Ed McLeish

Friday, March 22, 1974

Shepparton’s secondary education is to get a $3 million boost.

Work is to start almost immediately on the new high school at Wanganui Reserve and a three-storey block extension at the Hawdon St high school.

A spokesman in the office of the Minister of Education (Mr Thompson) confirmed this morning that a contract had been let to Leighton Contractors Pty Ltd for $2 million to build the new high school.

He also confirmed that a contract had been let to L. U. Simon Pty Ltd for $900 000 to build a three-storey block at Shepparton High School.

Work will start almost immediately on both projects and the buildings should be ready for at least partial occupation by next February.

The new school at Wanganui Reserve is to be a co-educational high school and will replace the existing Girls’ High School.

To date, the school has not been named.

The Girls’ High School has sent a three page submission listing names in order of preference together with the results of a survey carried out by The News.

The school has recommended that the new high school be called Wanganui Park High School.

Its second preference is Parkside and third choice Longstaff.

The principal of the Girls’ High School (Miss D. Roche) was very excited by the announcement.

“This is really great news. I am so excited, we knew it was going to happen – we didn’t know when,” she said.

Chairman of the Girls’ School Advisory Council (Cr John Gerrard) said, “This is the news so many district parents have been waiting to hear for the past year.”

He was it was “satisfying and gratifying” to the school council that the scheme of things envisaged four years ago was about to become reality.

The school council will now be asking the Public Works Department for full details of the new school building.

The new school will cater for 800 students and be the first type of building of its kind in Shepparton.

The new concept involves a rectangle-shaped school built around a large courtyard.

There are similar type schools at Heatherton, Carrum and Maryvale.

The three-storey block at Shepparton High School will include Commonwealth Library and Science facilities and replace the present group of portables.

There will be 13 new classrooms, staff rooms and toilets.

High school principal (Mr Ron Michael) declined to make any statement as he said he had not been notified officially that a contract has been let for the new building.