Wee Waa High School in Budget Estimates

4 March, 2021
Wee Waa High School in Budget Estimates Image

This week in Budget Estimates we have seen the Minister for Education questioned about the ongoing environmental issues at Wee Waa High School and the long term plan for the staff and students at the school.

The Minister was able to confirm that the issue at the school is mould, the problem being they don’t know the source of this mould, or what the long-term effects will be on staff and students health. Sadly, we’re none-the-wiser as to what the Education Department’s long-term plan is. Mark Scott the Secretary of the Department of Education alluded to ‘sophisticated analysis and planning’ but the details were not forthcoming.

This week the Wee Waa High School P&C have been back in contact with my office and the Minister’s office requesting that information be shared with them regarding the investigations that were undertaken and what the plan is. That information should be freely flowing to the whole school community and is something that I will request of the Minister when I meet with her next week to discuss a number of education issues across the electorate.

The staff and students of Wee Waa High School and their families deserve to know exactly what they’re being exposed to; and what the plan is for their access to education. We cannot, and should not, be put in a situation where these kids and staff are in demountables forever. In saying that, if the High School buildings are to be reopened for use, we need to be 100% sure that there is no risk in doing that.

In September last year I also raised with the Minister the possibility of a Whole Group Misadventure being applied for the 2020 Year 12 Cohort. These students have dealt with the impacts of drought, COVID-19 and a total upheaval of their schooling due to this mould issue. In my eyes it seemed wholly appropriate that these impact of these circumstances should be been taken into consideration when marking these students’ HSC examinations. The NSW Education Standards Authority has declined the application made on behalf of these young adults, which is disappointing to say the least.

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