The Hon. J.M.A. LENSINK: I seek leave to make a brief explanation before asking the Minister for Aboriginal Affairs and Reconciliation, representing the Minister for Education and Children’s Services, a question regarding the Port Adelaide Primary School.
The Hon. J.M.A. LENSINK: This particular primary school has been marked for closure by the Rann Labor government, and I quote from The Sunday Mail of yesterday, 21 November. Under the heading ‘Don’t shut our school— Stupid decision, says mayor’ the lead paragraph reads:
The closure of Port Adelaide Primary School has been described as ‘stupidity’ by Port Adelaide Enfield mayor Fiona Barr, because of the region’s population push.
In relation to the closure, I note that there is a development at Port Adelaide of some $1.2 billion, 4 000 people are expected to move into the district, and there will be at least 1,900 new townhouses and apartments in the development.
The Minister for Education and Children’s Services is quoted in the paper as saying, ‘the future use of the site [is] still [to] be considered’. My questions are:
1. What method was used to determine population needs and future demands for schools in the area?
2. What were the conclusions of such research?
3. Has the government made any assessment regarding open space in the area and the need to preserve what remains?
4. Will the government give a commitment not to sell the land before the Newport Quays development has been fully completed and is fully occupied?
The Hon. T.G. ROBERTS (Minister for Aboriginal Affairs and Reconciliation): I will refer those questions to the Minister for Education and Children’s Services and bring back a reply.
(Monday 4 April 2005)
Port Adelaide Primary School
In reply to Hon. J.M.A. LENSINK (22 November 2004).
The Hon. T.G. ROBERTS: The Minister for Education and Children's Services has advised:
Port Adelaide School is not closing, but amalgamating with Alberton Primary School, in response to a request from the Port Adelaide and Alberton School communities.
Australian Bureau of Statistics figures show a decline in the birthrate in the Port Adelaide area over the past ten years. Enrolments at Port Adelaide Primary School have also declined around 20% per year over the past ten years, leaving a current enrolment of 55 children.
Demographic information shows an aging population, and people having fewer or no children. The significant decline in the number of school age children is expected to continue. However, if the school age population should increase, there are several schools which could accommodate and benefit from an increase in student population.Westport Primary School has capacity for an additional 150 students, Alberton Primary School has capacity for an additional 100 students and Le Fevre Primary School has capacity for a further 200 students. Ocean View High School has had a major upgrade, and Le Fevre High School has had significant re-developments. Both high schools having capacity for increased enrolments.
The assessment of open space in the area is a local government issue.
There has not yet been a decision made on the future of the Port Adelaide Primary School site.