Piccoli unveils major plan to revamp schools

by Sarah Bachman27 Feb 2015
 
The NSW Education Minister has announced an ambitious plan to upgrade the state’s schools.

Up to 60 high schools across the state will receive $148m to upgrade their infrastructure under a re-elected Baird Government, Education Minister Adrian Piccoli said on Wednesday.

Under the plan, $120m would go towards “capital works and infrastructure” for the purpose of improving the image of schools within their community.

The remaining $28m would be used to enhance the professional development of staff, including the retraining of 320 teachers as specialists in core subjects such as maths and science.

"The front of these schools leaves a lot to be desired, with remnants of designs of the 50s and 60s," Piccoli said, referring to Liverpool Boys High School as an example.

"It's a brick wall with a door in it and that's the front of the school."

Piccoli added that an additional $1bn would be allocated to provide up to 1,600 new or refurbished classrooms and learning spaces across NSW.

"Under the Building the Education Revolution program, millions of dollars went to each primary school but not very much money went to high schools," Piccoli said.

"We've now got primary schools looking pretty good, but were trying to redress that balance by investing extra money into high schools."

The Education Minister’s promise for additional funding follows an announcement made earlier in the month of a $40m 'super school' school in Ballina.

Piccoli said that the school will cater to the learning needs of Ballina students by providing them the facilities and resources they need for their learning outcomes to excel.

"Built to prepare students for the opportunities and challenges of tomorrow, this high school will feature new flexible learning spaces so students can work on group and individual projects that require research, problem-solving and critical thinking,” Piccoli said.