• State Member for Monbulk, Deputy Premier, Minister for Education

    As your State Member of Parliament, I am passionate about representing our local community. My office and staff are here to help you and your family. Please feel free to contact my office in Belgrave, or send through an email.

  • GETTING RID OF TWO MORE LEVEL CROSSINGS IN MELBOURNE’S EAST

    The Andrews Labor Government will build rail bridges to remove two more dangerous and congested level crossings in Melbourne’s East. Minister for Transport Infrastructure Jacinta Allan joined Member for Monbulk James Merlino to reveal designs for the Manchester Road, Mooroolbark and Maroondah Highway, Lilydale level crossing removals.

  • DELIVERING FOR MONBULK

    The Andrews Labor Government is delivering on its promises and delivering for the people of Monbulk, with major investments in local schools, roads, health and public transport in the Victorian Budget 2019/20.

  • MORE CAR PARKS AT BELGRAVE STATION A STEP CLOSER

    Geotechnical works will take place at Belgrave Station car park from next week, as the Andrews Labor Government gets on with building more spaces for passengers to park.

  • FREE TAFE KICKS OFF IN MONBULK

    Students and job seekers from Monbulk can now take up Free TAFE training under the Andrews Labor Government’s $172 million program to make 30 priority TAFE courses and 20 pre-apprenticeship courses tuition fee free from this year.

  • State Member for Monbulk, Deputy Premier, Minister for Education

    As your State Member of Parliament, I am passionate about representing our local community. My office and staff are here to help you and your family. Please feel free to contact my office in Belgrave, or send through an email.

Media Centre

Non-Gov Schools Urged To Take Up Respectful Relationships

Respectful Relationships is a whole-school approach, supporting schools to embed respect and gender equality in all aspects of their culture – in the classroom, the playground, the staffroom, and the broader school community. To date, 309 non-government schools have signed up to Respectful Relationships, however, the new EOI opportunity will ensure that the program can be rolled out even further. The Royal Commission into Family Violence recommended the implementation of Respectful Relationships to promote respect, positive attitudes and behaviours, and to teach children how to build healthy relationships, resilience and confidence. It is a program that is proven to work and change the behaviours of young people. The Labor Government has invested $82 million in Respectful Relationships, to deliver training, support and funding to schools to implement the initiative. All Victorian government schools are now part of the Respectful Relationships initiative, acquitting a key recommendation of the Royal Commission into Family Violence. The Minister for Education James Merlino recently announced that, from Term 2 this year, the teaching of consent will be mandatory in all government schools in an age-appropriate way. The Victorian Curriculum requires schools to teach the focus areas of relationships, sexuality and safety. While Respectful Relationships goes directly to the issue of consent, mandating the teaching of consent will bring focus to this critical issue and ensure consistency across the state. Schools and teachers will be supported to deliver the teaching of consent with further guidance and professional development. Non-government schools can apply until 31 May 2021 to take part in Respectful Relationships at the website: http://www.education.vic.gov.au/respectfulrelationships. Quotes attributable to Acting Premier and Minister for Education James Merlino “We are leading the nation through our Respectful Relationships program that goes directly to the issue of consent.” “There are no excuses for any school not rolling out a program like this. It is proven to make a real difference and is a recommendation of the Royal Commission into Family Violence.” “I want to see every single school across the country implement this program. Students have been clear they need a greater focus on the issue of consent and that is exactly what we will deliver.” Download the media release

Non-Gov Schools Urged To Take Up Respectful Relationships

Respectful Relationships is a whole-school approach, supporting schools to embed respect and gender equality in all aspects of their culture – in the classroom, the playground, the staffroom, and the broader school community. To date, 309 non-government schools have signed up to Respectful Relationships, however, the new EOI opportunity will ensure that the program can be rolled out even further. The Royal Commission into Family Violence recommended the implementation of Respectful Relationships to promote respect, positive attitudes and behaviours, and to teach children how to build healthy relationships, resilience and confidence. It is a program that is proven to work and change the behaviours of young people. The Labor Government has invested $82 million in Respectful Relationships, to deliver training, support and funding to schools to implement the initiative. All Victorian government schools are now part of the Respectful Relationships initiative, acquitting a key recommendation of the Royal Commission into Family Violence. The Minister for Education James Merlino recently announced that, from Term 2 this year, the teaching of consent will be mandatory in all government schools in an age-appropriate way. The Victorian Curriculum requires schools to teach the focus areas of relationships, sexuality and safety. While Respectful Relationships goes directly to the issue of consent, mandating the teaching of consent will bring focus to this critical issue and ensure consistency across the state. Schools and teachers will be supported to deliver the teaching of consent with further guidance and professional development. Non-government schools can apply until 31 May 2021 to take part in Respectful Relationships at the website: http://www.education.vic.gov.au/respectfulrelationships. Quotes attributable to Acting Premier and Minister for Education James Merlino “We are leading the nation through our Respectful Relationships program that goes directly to the issue of consent.” “There are no excuses for any school not rolling out a program like this. It is proven to make a real difference and is a recommendation of the Royal Commission into Family Violence.” “I want to see every single school across the country implement this program. Students have been clear they need a greater focus on the issue of consent and that is exactly what we will deliver.” Download the media release

New Gym And Hope Centre For Heathmont Students

Students in Heathmont now have more first-class facilities at their school, thanks to the Andrews Labor Government. Minister for Education James Merlino and Member for Bayswater Jackson Taylor today opened $5.5 million worth of upgrades at Heathmont College, comprising a new gym and a refurbished HOPE Centre. The competition-grade basketball and netball gym is complete with teaching space, change rooms, toilets and storage. The HOPE centre provides crucial student wellbeing and counselling services and supports a vibrant, motivated and connected learning community. Heathmont College is also leading the way in its participation in an initiative to retrain out-of-field Years 7-10 teachers in Victorian government schools in maths and science. The Department of Education and Training has engaged Deakin University to deliver the Secondary Mathematics and Science Initiative. Under the initiative, four Heathmont College teachers have already had three virtual learning days to boost their skills in teaching STEM subjects. In the past five years, the Labor Government has invested more than $9 billion in more than 1,600 school upgrades – creating more than 10,000 construction jobs – and is now ahead of schedule of its commitment to open 100 new schools by 2026, with 48 new schools opening between 2019 and 2022. Quotes attributable to Minister for Education James Merlino “We’re ensuring local students have the best facilities, our classrooms have the best teachers and every child is given the best chance to succeed.” “Our record investment in school infrastructure is part of our commitment to keep delivering for our hard-working school communities, their students and families.” Quotes attributable to Member for Bayswater Jackson Taylor “The new gym and refurbished HOPE Centre are a great boost for Heathmont College students and the wider community.” “I’m stoked to have helped secure a further $2.5 million in the last budget to continue to back this great school in, and provide the first class facilities they deserve.” Download the media release

New Gym And Hope Centre For Heathmont Students

Students in Heathmont now have more first-class facilities at their school, thanks to the Andrews Labor Government. Minister for Education James Merlino and Member for Bayswater Jackson Taylor today opened $5.5 million worth of upgrades at Heathmont College, comprising a new gym and a refurbished HOPE Centre. The competition-grade basketball and netball gym is complete with teaching space, change rooms, toilets and storage. The HOPE centre provides crucial student wellbeing and counselling services and supports a vibrant, motivated and connected learning community. Heathmont College is also leading the way in its participation in an initiative to retrain out-of-field Years 7-10 teachers in Victorian government schools in maths and science. The Department of Education and Training has engaged Deakin University to deliver the Secondary Mathematics and Science Initiative. Under the initiative, four Heathmont College teachers have already had three virtual learning days to boost their skills in teaching STEM subjects. In the past five years, the Labor Government has invested more than $9 billion in more than 1,600 school upgrades – creating more than 10,000 construction jobs – and is now ahead of schedule of its commitment to open 100 new schools by 2026, with 48 new schools opening between 2019 and 2022. Quotes attributable to Minister for Education James Merlino “We’re ensuring local students have the best facilities, our classrooms have the best teachers and every child is given the best chance to succeed.” “Our record investment in school infrastructure is part of our commitment to keep delivering for our hard-working school communities, their students and families.” Quotes attributable to Member for Bayswater Jackson Taylor “The new gym and refurbished HOPE Centre are a great boost for Heathmont College students and the wider community.” “I’m stoked to have helped secure a further $2.5 million in the last budget to continue to back this great school in, and provide the first class facilities they deserve.” Download the media release

More Outside School Hours Care Options For Families

The Andrews Labor Government is helping more schools establish outside school hours care services, to get Victorians back into the workforce while ensuring our children are cared for. Minister for Education James Merlino today announced 53 schools will share in more than $4.1 million in grants to establish a new outside school hours care service from Term 3 this year. These schools will receive up to $75,000 per year over the next four years for their outside school hours care service. The funding will help establish new services, and provide support for costs including resources or equipment, setup and administration, facility upgrades, small service viability and transport. The number of schools providing access to outside school hours care services through these grants will increase by 2.3% in Melbourne and 21.95% in regional Victoria, with an overall increase of 7.52%. This is the first round of grants to be awarded under the $81.6 million initiative announced in the Victorian Budget 2020/21 to establish up to 400 new outside school hours care services at government schools. There will be another three application rounds between this year and 2023. The Labor Government is building the Education State so that every student can access a great local school and get a great education. Quotes attributable to Minister for Education James Merlino “By creating more outside school hours care services, we are helping parents and carers to get back to work, study, training or re-enter the workforce as part of Victoria’s economic recovery from the coronavirus pandemic.” “These services will ensure our kids are cared for, before and after school hours.” Download the media release

More Outside School Hours Care Options For Families

The Andrews Labor Government is helping more schools establish outside school hours care services, to get Victorians back into the workforce while ensuring our children are cared for. Minister for Education James Merlino today announced 53 schools will share in more than $4.1 million in grants to establish a new outside school hours care service from Term 3 this year. These schools will receive up to $75,000 per year over the next four years for their outside school hours care service. The funding will help establish new services, and provide support for costs including resources or equipment, setup and administration, facility upgrades, small service viability and transport. The number of schools providing access to outside school hours care services through these grants will increase by 2.3% in Melbourne and 21.95% in regional Victoria, with an overall increase of 7.52%. This is the first round of grants to be awarded under the $81.6 million initiative announced in the Victorian Budget 2020/21 to establish up to 400 new outside school hours care services at government schools. There will be another three application rounds between this year and 2023. The Labor Government is building the Education State so that every student can access a great local school and get a great education. Quotes attributable to Minister for Education James Merlino “By creating more outside school hours care services, we are helping parents and carers to get back to work, study, training or re-enter the workforce as part of Victoria’s economic recovery from the coronavirus pandemic.” “These services will ensure our kids are cared for, before and after school hours.” Download the media release

Monbulk Clubs Score Sport Grants

7 grassroots sport clubs and organisations in Monbulk are set to bolster their coaching skills, administration expertise, or score new sports equipment thanks to a share in funding from the Victorian Government. Member for Monbulk James Merlino MP today announced the successful local applicants of the latest round of the Victorian Government’s Sporting Club Grants Program. This is the third group of successful funding recipients to be announced. The grants provide clubs with up to $1,000 for new uniforms and equipment, up to $5,000 for training coaches, officials and volunteers, up to $5,000 to improve club operational effectiveness and up to $5,000 to help sports get back on their feet after the pandemic. Grant recipients include Ranges Basketball Club who scored $1,000 to purchase new uniforms, and Olinda Ferny Creek Football Netball Club, which is receiving $2,000 for cleaning, sanitation and equipment. Other local recipients include the 1st Kallista Scout Group, 1st Ferny Creek Scout Group, Belgrave Heights Tennis Club, Lysterfield Sailing Club and the Upwey Tecoma Cricket Club. The Sporting Club Grants Program is part of the Victorian Government’s commitment to make sport more accessible and inclusive, stimulate local economies, build sustainable sport and recreation and volunteer opportunities and increase local participation as coronavirus restrictions are lifted. The Sporting Club Grants program is accepting applications until 19 April or when the fund allocation runs out so grassroots clubs and organisations are encouraged to get in quick. Since 2014, the Victorian Government has provided more than 5150 sporting club grants totalling more than $7 million to clubs across the state. For more information on the grants and how to apply go to Sporting Club Grants Program - Sport and Recreation Victoria Quotes attributable to Minister for Community Sport, Ros Spence “We’re proud to provide this boost that opens up a range of opportunities on and off the field for clubs and their members.” “The Victorian Government is working hard to encourage and enable all Victorians to embrace a more active and healthy lifestyle and tap into all the sport and career pathways that grassroots community sport can provide.” “Congratulations our latest batch of grant recipients and I look forward to seeing a new generation of local champions get their chance to take their sports to a whole new level.” Quotes attributable to Member for Monbulk James Merlino MP “The Sporting Club Grants Program is giving grassroots sports clubs in Monbulk the support they need to grow their ranks and help more people than ever play the sports they love.” “Congratulations to all our local clubs in Monbulk.”

Monbulk Clubs Score Sport Grants

7 grassroots sport clubs and organisations in Monbulk are set to bolster their coaching skills, administration expertise, or score new sports equipment thanks to a share in funding from the Victorian Government. Member for Monbulk James Merlino MP today announced the successful local applicants of the latest round of the Victorian Government’s Sporting Club Grants Program. This is the third group of successful funding recipients to be announced. The grants provide clubs with up to $1,000 for new uniforms and equipment, up to $5,000 for training coaches, officials and volunteers, up to $5,000 to improve club operational effectiveness and up to $5,000 to help sports get back on their feet after the pandemic. Grant recipients include Ranges Basketball Club who scored $1,000 to purchase new uniforms, and Olinda Ferny Creek Football Netball Club, which is receiving $2,000 for cleaning, sanitation and equipment. Other local recipients include the 1st Kallista Scout Group, 1st Ferny Creek Scout Group, Belgrave Heights Tennis Club, Lysterfield Sailing Club and the Upwey Tecoma Cricket Club. The Sporting Club Grants Program is part of the Victorian Government’s commitment to make sport more accessible and inclusive, stimulate local economies, build sustainable sport and recreation and volunteer opportunities and increase local participation as coronavirus restrictions are lifted. The Sporting Club Grants program is accepting applications until 19 April or when the fund allocation runs out so grassroots clubs and organisations are encouraged to get in quick. Since 2014, the Victorian Government has provided more than 5150 sporting club grants totalling more than $7 million to clubs across the state. For more information on the grants and how to apply go to Sporting Club Grants Program - Sport and Recreation Victoria Quotes attributable to Minister for Community Sport, Ros Spence “We’re proud to provide this boost that opens up a range of opportunities on and off the field for clubs and their members.” “The Victorian Government is working hard to encourage and enable all Victorians to embrace a more active and healthy lifestyle and tap into all the sport and career pathways that grassroots community sport can provide.” “Congratulations our latest batch of grant recipients and I look forward to seeing a new generation of local champions get their chance to take their sports to a whole new level.” Quotes attributable to Member for Monbulk James Merlino MP “The Sporting Club Grants Program is giving grassroots sports clubs in Monbulk the support they need to grow their ranks and help more people than ever play the sports they love.” “Congratulations to all our local clubs in Monbulk.”

Helping Victorian Families Find Their Local School

The Andrews Labor Government’s Findmyschool website has been updated so parents continue to have the latest information to find out the school zone they live in. Acting Premier and Minister for Education James Merlino said the updated website includes school zones for the 14 new schools and campuses opening in 2022. Every child has the right to enrol at their designated neighbourhood government school or, if there is capacity, at another government school of their choice. No student currently enrolled in a school will be required to change schools. The website allows families to find their closest government school and other nearby government schools, giving families clarity on what their options are. Schools can be found by typing in a residential address or searching by school name. Findmyschool will show the zone for the current enrolment year and the 2022 enrolment year. When the site was launched in 2019, it was the first-time school zones were easily accessible in one place, giving schools and parents access to an official source of information on government school zones. The Labor Government is building the Education State so every student can access a great local school and education. In the past five years, the Labor Government has invested more than $9 billion in more than 1,600 school upgrades – creating more than 10,000 construction jobs – and is now ahead of schedule on its commitment to open 100 new schools by 2026, with 48 new schools opening between 2019 and 2022. Families can look up their school zone online at: findmyschool.vic.gov.au Quotes attributable to Acting Premier and Minister for Education James Merlino “We will deliver 100 new government schools by 2026 and when a new school opens, the zones around nearby schools have to change to accommodate it. “The website takes the guess work out of identifying their closest government school, giving families the clarity they need when deciding which school to enrol their child in.” Download the media release

Helping Victorian Families Find Their Local School

The Andrews Labor Government’s Findmyschool website has been updated so parents continue to have the latest information to find out the school zone they live in. Acting Premier and Minister for Education James Merlino said the updated website includes school zones for the 14 new schools and campuses opening in 2022. Every child has the right to enrol at their designated neighbourhood government school or, if there is capacity, at another government school of their choice. No student currently enrolled in a school will be required to change schools. The website allows families to find their closest government school and other nearby government schools, giving families clarity on what their options are. Schools can be found by typing in a residential address or searching by school name. Findmyschool will show the zone for the current enrolment year and the 2022 enrolment year. When the site was launched in 2019, it was the first-time school zones were easily accessible in one place, giving schools and parents access to an official source of information on government school zones. The Labor Government is building the Education State so every student can access a great local school and education. In the past five years, the Labor Government has invested more than $9 billion in more than 1,600 school upgrades – creating more than 10,000 construction jobs – and is now ahead of schedule on its commitment to open 100 new schools by 2026, with 48 new schools opening between 2019 and 2022. Families can look up their school zone online at: findmyschool.vic.gov.au Quotes attributable to Acting Premier and Minister for Education James Merlino “We will deliver 100 new government schools by 2026 and when a new school opens, the zones around nearby schools have to change to accommodate it. “The website takes the guess work out of identifying their closest government school, giving families the clarity they need when deciding which school to enrol their child in.” Download the media release

Wage Subsidies Available For Dandenong Ranges Businesses

Businesses in the Dandenong Ranges area are urged to investigate their eligibility for wage subsidy payments of up to $20,000 per worker to take on people who have been most affected by the pandemic. The Andrews Labor Government opened employer applications for the $250 million Jobs Victoria Fund on Friday, 26 March. The Fund will support at least 10,000 people into work and is a key component of the Government’s $619.4 million Jobs Victoria boost which also involves the quadrupling of the service’s job search and support workforce. Victorian small and medium-sized businesses, sole traders, local councils, social enterprises, universities and not-for-profits are invited to apply for a share of the wage subsidies pool. The Fund will help Victorian businesses and organisations to rebuild and grow by providing a wage subsidy of up to $20,000 per eligible employee to meet the costs of taking on new workers for the first 12 months of their employment. Women’s employment has been disproportionately affected by the pandemic and $150 million of the Fund is dedicated to supporting women back into work, including $50 million supporting women over the age of 45. The Fund also focuses on people looking for work who are young, those who have been unemployed for six months or more, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, refugees and asylum seekers, and people living with a disability. Employers looking for more information on the Jobs Victoria Fund can call the Jobs Victoria hotline on 1300 208 575. They can also register on the Jobs Victoria online hub to post jobs and recruit skilled and qualified people looking for work in their local area. For more information, eligibility criteria, or to apply for the Jobs Victoria Fund, go to Jobs Victoria Fund | Jobs Victoria. Quotes attributable to Member for Monbulk James Merlino MP “These subsidies could be the difference between a business being able to put on a worker or falling just short.” “It’s crucial that we help those jobseekers who need it most, and this is a very practical way to do that.” “I urge business owners and managers to get online or pick up the phone and find out what support is available.” Quote attributable to Minister for Employment Jaala Pulford “This fund is new and different, and it needs to be to help those people who face extra barriers to finding secure and rewarding work.” “Wage subsidies will help thousands of women, and older women especially, get back on their feet and into jobs. Other priority groups like young people and the long-term unemployed will also be a focus.”

Wage Subsidies Available For Dandenong Ranges Businesses

Businesses in the Dandenong Ranges area are urged to investigate their eligibility for wage subsidy payments of up to $20,000 per worker to take on people who have been most affected by the pandemic. The Andrews Labor Government opened employer applications for the $250 million Jobs Victoria Fund on Friday, 26 March. The Fund will support at least 10,000 people into work and is a key component of the Government’s $619.4 million Jobs Victoria boost which also involves the quadrupling of the service’s job search and support workforce. Victorian small and medium-sized businesses, sole traders, local councils, social enterprises, universities and not-for-profits are invited to apply for a share of the wage subsidies pool. The Fund will help Victorian businesses and organisations to rebuild and grow by providing a wage subsidy of up to $20,000 per eligible employee to meet the costs of taking on new workers for the first 12 months of their employment. Women’s employment has been disproportionately affected by the pandemic and $150 million of the Fund is dedicated to supporting women back into work, including $50 million supporting women over the age of 45. The Fund also focuses on people looking for work who are young, those who have been unemployed for six months or more, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, refugees and asylum seekers, and people living with a disability. Employers looking for more information on the Jobs Victoria Fund can call the Jobs Victoria hotline on 1300 208 575. They can also register on the Jobs Victoria online hub to post jobs and recruit skilled and qualified people looking for work in their local area. For more information, eligibility criteria, or to apply for the Jobs Victoria Fund, go to Jobs Victoria Fund | Jobs Victoria. Quotes attributable to Member for Monbulk James Merlino MP “These subsidies could be the difference between a business being able to put on a worker or falling just short.” “It’s crucial that we help those jobseekers who need it most, and this is a very practical way to do that.” “I urge business owners and managers to get online or pick up the phone and find out what support is available.” Quote attributable to Minister for Employment Jaala Pulford “This fund is new and different, and it needs to be to help those people who face extra barriers to finding secure and rewarding work.” “Wage subsidies will help thousands of women, and older women especially, get back on their feet and into jobs. Other priority groups like young people and the long-term unemployed will also be a focus.”

Recognition For Monbulk School Industry Partnerships

Local businesses across the Dandenong Ranges that are giving students vital on-the-job experience have been honoured by the Andrews Labor Government. Member for Monbulk James Merlino MP today celebrated employers in Monbulk who are providing valuable workplace education for students through programs such as Head Start, school-based apprenticeships and traineeships, Structured Workplace Learning and work experience opportunities. The importance of school and industry partnerships were recognised at the Championing Victorian Industry within Schools event, which honoured businesses and their outstanding achievements in supporting students in 2020. The businesses recognised included Barry Rogers Automotive Repairs, P&L Francis Carpentry, Robert Heuzinkveld, Tin Pan Alley and Yarra Valley Cabinet Makers. The event aims to strengthen relationships between schools and industry to provide further opportunities for students across Victoria. Industry provides an essential and valued contribution to applied learning outcomes for students across VCE, VCAL and VET programs and this event highlights how integral these industry relationships are. Schools and school partners nominated businesses and employers who supported students and school-based programs in 2020. The Victorian Government is investing in creating the education and training pathways for students to get the skills they need for the jobs they want. This includes a current investment of $49.8 million to deliver Head Start Apprentices and Traineeships – a program that supports students to complete their VCE or VCAL over three years alongside paid on-the-job training that leads to a qualification. The government is also investing $38.1 million to transform vocational and applied learning in senior secondary schooling, which includes the development of a new single integrated senior secondary certificate, following a review by former Victorian Curriculum and Assessment Authority CEO John Firth. These reforms include a focus on strengthening partnerships between schools and industry, to give every student a high quality and meaningful experience that benefits both students and industry and contributes to Victoria’s economic recovery roadmap. Quotes attributable to Member for Monbulk James Merlino MP “We’re delighted to have an opportunity to thank these businesses and highlight their achievements in supporting students.” “The support of Monbulk businesses in providing hands-on experience and training for Victorian students has never been more important and we thank and celebrate those employers that support school programs” “We are investing in the future of all Victorians through a wide range of vocational programs which are connecting industry with the workforce of tomorrow."

Recognition For Monbulk School Industry Partnerships

Local businesses across the Dandenong Ranges that are giving students vital on-the-job experience have been honoured by the Andrews Labor Government. Member for Monbulk James Merlino MP today celebrated employers in Monbulk who are providing valuable workplace education for students through programs such as Head Start, school-based apprenticeships and traineeships, Structured Workplace Learning and work experience opportunities. The importance of school and industry partnerships were recognised at the Championing Victorian Industry within Schools event, which honoured businesses and their outstanding achievements in supporting students in 2020. The businesses recognised included Barry Rogers Automotive Repairs, P&L Francis Carpentry, Robert Heuzinkveld, Tin Pan Alley and Yarra Valley Cabinet Makers. The event aims to strengthen relationships between schools and industry to provide further opportunities for students across Victoria. Industry provides an essential and valued contribution to applied learning outcomes for students across VCE, VCAL and VET programs and this event highlights how integral these industry relationships are. Schools and school partners nominated businesses and employers who supported students and school-based programs in 2020. The Victorian Government is investing in creating the education and training pathways for students to get the skills they need for the jobs they want. This includes a current investment of $49.8 million to deliver Head Start Apprentices and Traineeships – a program that supports students to complete their VCE or VCAL over three years alongside paid on-the-job training that leads to a qualification. The government is also investing $38.1 million to transform vocational and applied learning in senior secondary schooling, which includes the development of a new single integrated senior secondary certificate, following a review by former Victorian Curriculum and Assessment Authority CEO John Firth. These reforms include a focus on strengthening partnerships between schools and industry, to give every student a high quality and meaningful experience that benefits both students and industry and contributes to Victoria’s economic recovery roadmap. Quotes attributable to Member for Monbulk James Merlino MP “We’re delighted to have an opportunity to thank these businesses and highlight their achievements in supporting students.” “The support of Monbulk businesses in providing hands-on experience and training for Victorian students has never been more important and we thank and celebrate those employers that support school programs” “We are investing in the future of all Victorians through a wide range of vocational programs which are connecting industry with the workforce of tomorrow."

New Indoor Inclusive Space For Kallista Primary Students

Works have begun on a new Indoor Inclusive Learning Space as part of a $87,989 upgrade to make Kallista Primary School more inclusive. Member for Monbulk James Merlino MP today turned the first sod to start construction on Kallista Primary School’s new Indoor Inclusive Learning Space, made possible by funding through the Inclusive Schools Fund. The Inclusive Schools Fund builds on the unprecedented investment of nearly $1.6 billion in in the state budget to support students with a disability or additional need and is part of the Victorian Government’s commitment to inclusive education. An additional $20 million was announced in the 2020-21 State Budget as part of the Labor Government’s $60 million Inclusive Schools Fund. Since its inception in 2015, the Fund has supported 234 creative projects to build inclusive indoor and outdoor learning spaces as well as accessible playgrounds have been announced. Inclusive education is about ensuring that all students, regardless of disabilities or other differences, can fully participate, learn, develop and succeed in Victorian government schools. The Labor Government is building the Education State to ensure every student can access a great local school and get a great education. Strengthening inclusive education for all students, including those with disabilities and additional learning needs, is fundamental to an equitable and excellent school system. In the past five years, the Victorian Government has invested more than $9 billion in more than 1,600 school upgrades – creating more than 10,000 construction jobs – and is now ahead of schedule its commitment to open 100 new schools by 2026, with 48 new schools opening between 2019 and 2022. Quotes attributable to Member for Monbulk James Merlino MP “This new space will make a real difference to students at Kallista Primary School, who will get the benefits of new inclusive spaces to cater for a wider range of options for teaching and learning.” “As we build the Education State, we’re continuing to invest in schools to ensure students of all abilities can access a great education – no matter their circumstances."

New Indoor Inclusive Space For Kallista Primary Students

Works have begun on a new Indoor Inclusive Learning Space as part of a $87,989 upgrade to make Kallista Primary School more inclusive. Member for Monbulk James Merlino MP today turned the first sod to start construction on Kallista Primary School’s new Indoor Inclusive Learning Space, made possible by funding through the Inclusive Schools Fund. The Inclusive Schools Fund builds on the unprecedented investment of nearly $1.6 billion in in the state budget to support students with a disability or additional need and is part of the Victorian Government’s commitment to inclusive education. An additional $20 million was announced in the 2020-21 State Budget as part of the Labor Government’s $60 million Inclusive Schools Fund. Since its inception in 2015, the Fund has supported 234 creative projects to build inclusive indoor and outdoor learning spaces as well as accessible playgrounds have been announced. Inclusive education is about ensuring that all students, regardless of disabilities or other differences, can fully participate, learn, develop and succeed in Victorian government schools. The Labor Government is building the Education State to ensure every student can access a great local school and get a great education. Strengthening inclusive education for all students, including those with disabilities and additional learning needs, is fundamental to an equitable and excellent school system. In the past five years, the Victorian Government has invested more than $9 billion in more than 1,600 school upgrades – creating more than 10,000 construction jobs – and is now ahead of schedule its commitment to open 100 new schools by 2026, with 48 new schools opening between 2019 and 2022. Quotes attributable to Member for Monbulk James Merlino MP “This new space will make a real difference to students at Kallista Primary School, who will get the benefits of new inclusive spaces to cater for a wider range of options for teaching and learning.” “As we build the Education State, we’re continuing to invest in schools to ensure students of all abilities can access a great education – no matter their circumstances."

 

Monbulk Schools Share In Maintenance Boost

Students at more than 200 schools across Victoria are set to benefit from an essential maintenance boost, thanks to the Andrews Labor Government. Member for Monbulk James Merlino MP today announced 5 schools in Monbulk are among the 230 schools that will share in $10.4 million of Planned Maintenance Program (PMP) funding. PMP funding ensures schools can undertake essential work to grounds and classrooms such as fixing roofs and windows, painting, resurfacing floors and replacing windows, as well as external landscaping works like pathways and lighting. Tecoma Primary School has been allocated a total of $60,000. This includes $5,000 for high priority maintenance tasks identified in the school's Rolling Facilities Assessment, including external floor revarnishing, guttering replacement, lighting repair, roof repair and wall repainting. This also includes $55,000 for high priority maintenance tasks identified in the school's Specialist Assessment to address the school's roof plumbing and structural issues. Olinda Primary School has been allocated a total of $35,000. This includes $35,000 for high priority maintenance tasks identified in the school's Specialist Assessment to address the school's roof plumbing, structural issues. Gladesville Primary School has been allocated a total of $15,000. This includes $15,000 for high priority maintenance tasks identified in the school's Specialist Assessment to address the school's roof plumbing and structural issues. Ferny Creek Primary School has been allocated a total of $10,000. This includes $10,000 to address high priority maintenance tasks identified in the school's specialist assessment. This will address the school's roof plumbing and structural issues. Macclesfield Primary School has been allocated a total of $175,000. This includes $155,000 for high priority maintenance works on the school's Shelter in Place building. These works will be delivered by the Victorian School Building Authority on behalf of the school. The school will also receive $20,000 to address high priority maintenance tasks identified in the school's Rolling Facilities Evaluation, including bench replacement, decking repair, door repair, external timber flooring repair, fascia repainting, handrail replacement, shed replacement and wall repainting. More than $2.4 million will go towards maintenance to Shelter-in-Place buildings at 11 schools, which provides emergency accommodation to staff and students in the case of a bushfire. The funding is on top of over $27 million of PMP funding already provided to 357 schools in the 2020 school year. This funding ensures existing buildings at Victoria’s 1,500 state schools are safe, modern and properly maintained. Works are determined by an evaluation system which uses up-to-date information on the condition of schools to create a faster and more targeted allocation of PMP funding. In the past five years, the Labor Government has invested more than $9 billion in more than 1,600 school upgrades – creating more than 10,000 construction jobs – and is now ahead of schedule on its commitment to open 100 new schools by 2026, with 48 new schools opening between 2019 and 2022. Quote attributable to Member for Monbulk James Merlino MP “Our record investment in school infrastructure is delivering high quality classrooms for our hard-working principals, teachers and staff, as well as students and families.” “Our Planned Maintenance Program is about ensuring that every Monbulk school is well maintained and safe to provide the best possible environment for students to learn in."

Monbulk Schools Share In Maintenance Boost

Students at more than 200 schools across Victoria are set to benefit from an essential maintenance boost, thanks to the Andrews Labor Government. Member for Monbulk James Merlino MP today announced 5 schools in Monbulk are among the 230 schools that will share in $10.4 million of Planned Maintenance Program (PMP) funding. PMP funding ensures schools can undertake essential work to grounds and classrooms such as fixing roofs and windows, painting, resurfacing floors and replacing windows, as well as external landscaping works like pathways and lighting. Tecoma Primary School has been allocated a total of $60,000. This includes $5,000 for high priority maintenance tasks identified in the school's Rolling Facilities Assessment, including external floor revarnishing, guttering replacement, lighting repair, roof repair and wall repainting. This also includes $55,000 for high priority maintenance tasks identified in the school's Specialist Assessment to address the school's roof plumbing and structural issues. Olinda Primary School has been allocated a total of $35,000. This includes $35,000 for high priority maintenance tasks identified in the school's Specialist Assessment to address the school's roof plumbing, structural issues. Gladesville Primary School has been allocated a total of $15,000. This includes $15,000 for high priority maintenance tasks identified in the school's Specialist Assessment to address the school's roof plumbing and structural issues. Ferny Creek Primary School has been allocated a total of $10,000. This includes $10,000 to address high priority maintenance tasks identified in the school's specialist assessment. This will address the school's roof plumbing and structural issues. Macclesfield Primary School has been allocated a total of $175,000. This includes $155,000 for high priority maintenance works on the school's Shelter in Place building. These works will be delivered by the Victorian School Building Authority on behalf of the school. The school will also receive $20,000 to address high priority maintenance tasks identified in the school's Rolling Facilities Evaluation, including bench replacement, decking repair, door repair, external timber flooring repair, fascia repainting, handrail replacement, shed replacement and wall repainting. More than $2.4 million will go towards maintenance to Shelter-in-Place buildings at 11 schools, which provides emergency accommodation to staff and students in the case of a bushfire. The funding is on top of over $27 million of PMP funding already provided to 357 schools in the 2020 school year. This funding ensures existing buildings at Victoria’s 1,500 state schools are safe, modern and properly maintained. Works are determined by an evaluation system which uses up-to-date information on the condition of schools to create a faster and more targeted allocation of PMP funding. In the past five years, the Labor Government has invested more than $9 billion in more than 1,600 school upgrades – creating more than 10,000 construction jobs – and is now ahead of schedule on its commitment to open 100 new schools by 2026, with 48 new schools opening between 2019 and 2022. Quote attributable to Member for Monbulk James Merlino MP “Our record investment in school infrastructure is delivering high quality classrooms for our hard-working principals, teachers and staff, as well as students and families.” “Our Planned Maintenance Program is about ensuring that every Monbulk school is well maintained and safe to provide the best possible environment for students to learn in."

New Designs And Builder For 120 New Mental Health Beds

The Andrews Labor Government is transforming Victoria’s mental health system with 120 new mental health beds across four new acute mental health facilities to support more people when they need it most. Acting Premier and Minister for Mental Health James Merlino today released designs and announced the builder for the new acute mental health facilities in Epping, Geelong, Parkville and St Albans. The designs reveal each facility’s exteriors, grounds and internal fit-outs, which have been carefully considered to create a safe, welcoming, and healing atmosphere for consumers on their treatment and recovery journey. The designs have been developed in consultation with carers, clinicians, staff, and consumers with lived experience of the mental health system. The beds will be spread across Northern Health’s Epping campus (30 beds), Barwon Health’s McKellar Centre (16 beds), the Royal Melbourne Hospital (22 beds) and Western Health’s Sunshine Hospital (52 beds). The $492 million investment will be delivered by the Victorian Health Building Authority. It is a response to a key recommendation of the Royal Commission into Victoria’s Mental Health System. Lendlease Building has been appointed head contractor to build the project following a competitive tender process. Construction will involve a combination of modular solutions and traditional construction and refurbishment, with works set to begin in mid-2021. All four facilities are expected to be operational by 2023. Once operational, the beds will deliver 43,000 extra days of hospital-based care – meaning an estimated 2,500 more people will be able to get the help they need, when they need it most. The new facilities will reduce pressure on emergency departments and deliver acute mental health services, including inpatient and community-based care to Victorians experiencing acute mental health issues from contemporary, safe, and high-quality hospital settings. The Labor Government invested $868.6 million in the 2020/21 Victorian Budget to ensure Victorians have the mental health supports they need, closer to home. It’s the single largest investment in mental health by any state government and will ensure that Victoria’s mental health system is one that Victorians deserve. Quotes attributable to the Acting Premier and Minister for Mental Health James Merlino “These new beds will mean more people can get the care they need, when they need it most – and take pressure off our emergency departments.” “We’re implementing every recommendation of the Royal Commission – to fix our broken mental health system and save lives.” Download the media release here

New Designs And Builder For 120 New Mental Health Beds

The Andrews Labor Government is transforming Victoria’s mental health system with 120 new mental health beds across four new acute mental health facilities to support more people when they need it most. Acting Premier and Minister for Mental Health James Merlino today released designs and announced the builder for the new acute mental health facilities in Epping, Geelong, Parkville and St Albans. The designs reveal each facility’s exteriors, grounds and internal fit-outs, which have been carefully considered to create a safe, welcoming, and healing atmosphere for consumers on their treatment and recovery journey. The designs have been developed in consultation with carers, clinicians, staff, and consumers with lived experience of the mental health system. The beds will be spread across Northern Health’s Epping campus (30 beds), Barwon Health’s McKellar Centre (16 beds), the Royal Melbourne Hospital (22 beds) and Western Health’s Sunshine Hospital (52 beds). The $492 million investment will be delivered by the Victorian Health Building Authority. It is a response to a key recommendation of the Royal Commission into Victoria’s Mental Health System. Lendlease Building has been appointed head contractor to build the project following a competitive tender process. Construction will involve a combination of modular solutions and traditional construction and refurbishment, with works set to begin in mid-2021. All four facilities are expected to be operational by 2023. Once operational, the beds will deliver 43,000 extra days of hospital-based care – meaning an estimated 2,500 more people will be able to get the help they need, when they need it most. The new facilities will reduce pressure on emergency departments and deliver acute mental health services, including inpatient and community-based care to Victorians experiencing acute mental health issues from contemporary, safe, and high-quality hospital settings. The Labor Government invested $868.6 million in the 2020/21 Victorian Budget to ensure Victorians have the mental health supports they need, closer to home. It’s the single largest investment in mental health by any state government and will ensure that Victoria’s mental health system is one that Victorians deserve. Quotes attributable to the Acting Premier and Minister for Mental Health James Merlino “These new beds will mean more people can get the care they need, when they need it most – and take pressure off our emergency departments.” “We’re implementing every recommendation of the Royal Commission – to fix our broken mental health system and save lives.” Download the media release here

Work Starts On Billanook Primary School Upgrades

Students at Billanook Primary School are a step closer to getting the facilities they need for a great start in life, with an architect appointed to design the school’s exciting upgrade. Member for Monbulk James Merlino MP today announced that Baumgart Clark Architects have been appointed to design the school’s $7.81 million upgrade. The upgrade will modernise the school by working with school leaders to ensure this work helps achieve their educational goals and that improvements are targeted where it is needed most. In the past five years, the Labor Government has invested more than $9 billion in more than 1,600 school upgrades – creating more than 10,000 construction jobs – and is now ahead of schedule its commitment to open 100 new schools by 2026, with 48 new schools opening between 2019 and 2022. The Labor Government is building the Education State to ensure that every student can access a great local school and get a quality education. Quotes attributable to Member for Monbulk James Merlino MP “We’re making sure that our schools have the best facilities, our classrooms have the best teachers and that every child is given every chance to succeed.” “Billanook families are a step closer to getting the great local school facilities their kids need to thrive."

Work Starts On Billanook Primary School Upgrades

Students at Billanook Primary School are a step closer to getting the facilities they need for a great start in life, with an architect appointed to design the school’s exciting upgrade. Member for Monbulk James Merlino MP today announced that Baumgart Clark Architects have been appointed to design the school’s $7.81 million upgrade. The upgrade will modernise the school by working with school leaders to ensure this work helps achieve their educational goals and that improvements are targeted where it is needed most. In the past five years, the Labor Government has invested more than $9 billion in more than 1,600 school upgrades – creating more than 10,000 construction jobs – and is now ahead of schedule its commitment to open 100 new schools by 2026, with 48 new schools opening between 2019 and 2022. The Labor Government is building the Education State to ensure that every student can access a great local school and get a quality education. Quotes attributable to Member for Monbulk James Merlino MP “We’re making sure that our schools have the best facilities, our classrooms have the best teachers and that every child is given every chance to succeed.” “Billanook families are a step closer to getting the great local school facilities their kids need to thrive."

Hundreds Of Schools Share In Maintenance Boost

Students at more than 200 schools across Victoria are set to benefit from an essential maintenance boost, thanks to the Andrews Labor Government. Minister for Education James Merlino today announced that 230 schools will share in $10.4 million of Planned Maintenance Program (PMP) funding. PMP funding ensures schools can undertake essential work to grounds and classrooms such as fixing roofs and windows, painting, resurfacing floors and replacing windows, as well as external landscaping works like pathways and lighting. More than $2.4 million will go towards maintenance to Shelter-in-Place buildings at 11 schools, which provides emergency accommodation to staff and students in the case of a bushfire. The funding is on top of over $27 million of PMP funding already provided to 357 schools in the 2020 school year. This funding ensures existing buildings at Victoria’s 1,500 state schools are safe, modern and properly maintained. Works are determined by an evaluation system which uses up-to-date information on the condition of schools to create a faster and more targeted allocation of PMP funding. In the past five years, the Labor Government has invested more than $9 billion in more than 1,600 school upgrades – creating more than 10,000 construction jobs – and is now ahead of schedule on its commitment to open 100 new schools by 2026, with 48 new schools opening between 2019 and 2022. Quotes attributable to Minister for Education James Merlino  “Our Planned Maintenance Program is about ensuring that every Victorian school is well maintained and safe to provide the best possible environment for students to learn in.” “Our record investment in school infrastructure is delivering high quality classrooms for our hard-working principals, teachers and staff, as well as students and families.” Download the media release

Hundreds Of Schools Share In Maintenance Boost

Students at more than 200 schools across Victoria are set to benefit from an essential maintenance boost, thanks to the Andrews Labor Government. Minister for Education James Merlino today announced that 230 schools will share in $10.4 million of Planned Maintenance Program (PMP) funding. PMP funding ensures schools can undertake essential work to grounds and classrooms such as fixing roofs and windows, painting, resurfacing floors and replacing windows, as well as external landscaping works like pathways and lighting. More than $2.4 million will go towards maintenance to Shelter-in-Place buildings at 11 schools, which provides emergency accommodation to staff and students in the case of a bushfire. The funding is on top of over $27 million of PMP funding already provided to 357 schools in the 2020 school year. This funding ensures existing buildings at Victoria’s 1,500 state schools are safe, modern and properly maintained. Works are determined by an evaluation system which uses up-to-date information on the condition of schools to create a faster and more targeted allocation of PMP funding. In the past five years, the Labor Government has invested more than $9 billion in more than 1,600 school upgrades – creating more than 10,000 construction jobs – and is now ahead of schedule on its commitment to open 100 new schools by 2026, with 48 new schools opening between 2019 and 2022. Quotes attributable to Minister for Education James Merlino  “Our Planned Maintenance Program is about ensuring that every Victorian school is well maintained and safe to provide the best possible environment for students to learn in.” “Our record investment in school infrastructure is delivering high quality classrooms for our hard-working principals, teachers and staff, as well as students and families.” Download the media release

Local Businesses Recognised For School Training Partnerships

Local businesses across Victoria that are giving students vital on-the-job experience have been honoured by the Andrews Labor Government. Minister for Education James Merlino today celebrated employers from across the state who are providing valuable workplace education for students through programs such as Head Start, school-based apprenticeships and traineeships, Structured Workplace Learning and work experience opportunities. The importance of school and industry partnerships were recognised at the Championing Victorian Industry within Schools event, which honoured businesses and their outstanding achievements in supporting students in 2020. The event aims to strengthen relationships between schools and industry to provide further opportunities for students across Victoria. Industry provides an essential and valued contribution to applied learning outcomes for students across VCE, VCAL and VET programs and this event highlights how integral these industry relationships are. Schools and school partners nominated businesses and employers who supported students and school-based programs in 2020. The Labor Government is investing in creating the education and training pathways for students to get the skills they need for the jobs they want. This includes a current investment of $49.8 million to deliver Head Start Apprentices and Traineeships – a program that supports students to complete their VCE or VCAL over three years alongside paid on-the-job training that leads to a qualification. As well as a $38.1 million investment to transform vocational and applied learning in senior secondary schooling, which includes the development of a new single integrated senior secondary certificate. Quotes attributable to Minister for Education James Merlino “This is an opportunity to thank these businesses and highlight their achievements in supporting students.” “The support of local businesses in providing hands-on experience and training for Victorian students has never been more important and we thank and celebrate those employers that support school programs.” “We are investing in the future of all Victorians through a wide range of vocational programs which are connecting industry with the workforce of tomorrow.” Download the media release

Local Businesses Recognised For School Training Partnerships

Local businesses across Victoria that are giving students vital on-the-job experience have been honoured by the Andrews Labor Government. Minister for Education James Merlino today celebrated employers from across the state who are providing valuable workplace education for students through programs such as Head Start, school-based apprenticeships and traineeships, Structured Workplace Learning and work experience opportunities. The importance of school and industry partnerships were recognised at the Championing Victorian Industry within Schools event, which honoured businesses and their outstanding achievements in supporting students in 2020. The event aims to strengthen relationships between schools and industry to provide further opportunities for students across Victoria. Industry provides an essential and valued contribution to applied learning outcomes for students across VCE, VCAL and VET programs and this event highlights how integral these industry relationships are. Schools and school partners nominated businesses and employers who supported students and school-based programs in 2020. The Labor Government is investing in creating the education and training pathways for students to get the skills they need for the jobs they want. This includes a current investment of $49.8 million to deliver Head Start Apprentices and Traineeships – a program that supports students to complete their VCE or VCAL over three years alongside paid on-the-job training that leads to a qualification. As well as a $38.1 million investment to transform vocational and applied learning in senior secondary schooling, which includes the development of a new single integrated senior secondary certificate. Quotes attributable to Minister for Education James Merlino “This is an opportunity to thank these businesses and highlight their achievements in supporting students.” “The support of local businesses in providing hands-on experience and training for Victorian students has never been more important and we thank and celebrate those employers that support school programs.” “We are investing in the future of all Victorians through a wide range of vocational programs which are connecting industry with the workforce of tomorrow.” Download the media release

Delivering New Mental Health Jobs And Support Across Victoria

The Andrews Labor Government is making sure mental health workers across Victoria get the support and training they need – delivering new jobs and creating scholarships for more mental health nurses. Minister for Mental Health James Merlino today opened applications for the new Postgraduate Mental Health Nurses  Scholarships and marked the delivery of the first instalment of the mental health workforce reforms which will address critical workforce shortages in the sector and boost mental health support for all Victorians. The new jobs and reforms were funded as part of a $235 million Recovery Workforce package following recommendation by the Interim Report of the Royal Commission into Victoria’s Mental Health System, and include: an extra 29 full-time Junior Medical Officer positions across Victoria, which is equivalent to 130 additional mental health medical trainee rotations, ensuring critical on-the-ground training opportunities – part of a $2.3 million investment an expansion of the Graduate Mental Health Nurse program, creating 80 new positions across the state 35 extra Senior Nurse Educators supporting the Graduate Mental Health Nurses, with positions prioritised in rural and regional Victoria, following an initial investment of $7.96 million 70 new scholarships for training Postgraduate Mental Health Nurses – supported by an investment of $1.53 million to pay the full course-cost for nurses. As part of these workforce recommendations, by 2023 all medical trainees in Victoria complete a mandatory psychiatry rotation, giving all new doctors skills and knowledge of mental health that they can use in their medical careers to the benefit of the community. The Labor Government is investing $14.3 million to deliver these initiatives as part of the commitment to address clinical workforce shortages in the mental health sector and support future expansion. The recommendations will deliver 143 new roles to the mental health sector across Victoria. The Final Report of the Royal Commission into Victoria’s Mental Health System was handed down on 2 March 2021, and the Labor Government will implement every single one of its recommendations. Information about the scholarships can be found at acn.edu.au/scholarships Quotes attributable to Minister for Mental Health James Merlino “Boosting our mental health workforce is critical to ensuring Victorians get the support they deserve and delivering on the Royal Commission.” “These reforms mean more doctors and nurses will get the mental health skills needed, boosting capacity across the state.”  Download the media release

Delivering New Mental Health Jobs And Support Across Victoria

The Andrews Labor Government is making sure mental health workers across Victoria get the support and training they need – delivering new jobs and creating scholarships for more mental health nurses. Minister for Mental Health James Merlino today opened applications for the new Postgraduate Mental Health Nurses  Scholarships and marked the delivery of the first instalment of the mental health workforce reforms which will address critical workforce shortages in the sector and boost mental health support for all Victorians. The new jobs and reforms were funded as part of a $235 million Recovery Workforce package following recommendation by the Interim Report of the Royal Commission into Victoria’s Mental Health System, and include: an extra 29 full-time Junior Medical Officer positions across Victoria, which is equivalent to 130 additional mental health medical trainee rotations, ensuring critical on-the-ground training opportunities – part of a $2.3 million investment an expansion of the Graduate Mental Health Nurse program, creating 80 new positions across the state 35 extra Senior Nurse Educators supporting the Graduate Mental Health Nurses, with positions prioritised in rural and regional Victoria, following an initial investment of $7.96 million 70 new scholarships for training Postgraduate Mental Health Nurses – supported by an investment of $1.53 million to pay the full course-cost for nurses. As part of these workforce recommendations, by 2023 all medical trainees in Victoria complete a mandatory psychiatry rotation, giving all new doctors skills and knowledge of mental health that they can use in their medical careers to the benefit of the community. The Labor Government is investing $14.3 million to deliver these initiatives as part of the commitment to address clinical workforce shortages in the mental health sector and support future expansion. The recommendations will deliver 143 new roles to the mental health sector across Victoria. The Final Report of the Royal Commission into Victoria’s Mental Health System was handed down on 2 March 2021, and the Labor Government will implement every single one of its recommendations. Information about the scholarships can be found at acn.edu.au/scholarships Quotes attributable to Minister for Mental Health James Merlino “Boosting our mental health workforce is critical to ensuring Victorians get the support they deserve and delivering on the Royal Commission.” “These reforms mean more doctors and nurses will get the mental health skills needed, boosting capacity across the state.”  Download the media release

Nominations Open For New VET Champions Program

High-achieving Victorians who have built successful careers through vocational education and training (VET) will be showcased as part of a new initiative to inspire the next generation of secondary school students. Minister for Education James Merlino today opened nominations for the new VET Champions initiative, which will promote the career pathways and opportunities open to secondary school students who pursue VET. The Andrews Labor Government wants outstanding Victorians from a wide range of industries who are passionate about the work they are doing and the vocational pathways that get them there to take part. VET Champions could be someone who recently completed a course or apprenticeship or traineeship and is now thriving in their job, or they may be in their 30s and leading an exciting project or their own company. They will have the opportunity to share their experiences by speaking at events, participating in panel discussions, and meeting with students at school events or at TAFEs. VET Champions will be supported with specialised training in public speaking and presentation and will have their stories captured with digital content and videos. The Labor Government is investing $38.1 million to develop a new single integrated senior secondary certificate, following a review that found an integrated certificate will provide all Victorian students with the opportunity to develop academic and practical vocational skills – meaning students don’t have to choose between VCE and VCAL. The VET Champions initiative will help improve students’ understanding of vocational pathways and career options, which was identified as a recommendation from the review. The Victorian Government is investing in creating the education and training pathways for students to get the skills they need for the jobs they want. To nominate a VET Champion visit: education.vic.gov.au/about/programs/Pages/VET-Champions Quotes attributable to Minister for Education James Merlino “VET Champions will show students the value of hands on learning – whether through an apprenticeship, traineeship, a Certificate or a Diploma, future success often begins with vocational training.” “We want to ensure that all Victorian secondary school students have the opportunity to pursue high-quality VET training in schools which is why we’re developing a new single integrated senior secondary certificate.” Download the media release

Nominations Open For New VET Champions Program

High-achieving Victorians who have built successful careers through vocational education and training (VET) will be showcased as part of a new initiative to inspire the next generation of secondary school students. Minister for Education James Merlino today opened nominations for the new VET Champions initiative, which will promote the career pathways and opportunities open to secondary school students who pursue VET. The Andrews Labor Government wants outstanding Victorians from a wide range of industries who are passionate about the work they are doing and the vocational pathways that get them there to take part. VET Champions could be someone who recently completed a course or apprenticeship or traineeship and is now thriving in their job, or they may be in their 30s and leading an exciting project or their own company. They will have the opportunity to share their experiences by speaking at events, participating in panel discussions, and meeting with students at school events or at TAFEs. VET Champions will be supported with specialised training in public speaking and presentation and will have their stories captured with digital content and videos. The Labor Government is investing $38.1 million to develop a new single integrated senior secondary certificate, following a review that found an integrated certificate will provide all Victorian students with the opportunity to develop academic and practical vocational skills – meaning students don’t have to choose between VCE and VCAL. The VET Champions initiative will help improve students’ understanding of vocational pathways and career options, which was identified as a recommendation from the review. The Victorian Government is investing in creating the education and training pathways for students to get the skills they need for the jobs they want. To nominate a VET Champion visit: education.vic.gov.au/about/programs/Pages/VET-Champions Quotes attributable to Minister for Education James Merlino “VET Champions will show students the value of hands on learning – whether through an apprenticeship, traineeship, a Certificate or a Diploma, future success often begins with vocational training.” “We want to ensure that all Victorian secondary school students have the opportunity to pursue high-quality VET training in schools which is why we’re developing a new single integrated senior secondary certificate.” Download the media release

Vouchers To Give Kids In Yarra Ranges & Knox a Sporting Chance

The Andrews Labor Government is getting on with levelling the playing field with vouchers worth up to $200 each available for our state’s most vulnerable families to put towards the cost of their kids playing the sports they love. Member for Monbulk James Merlino MP today encouraged eligible families in Monbulk to take advantage of the $21 million Get Active Kids Voucher Program, which is rolling out up to 100,000 vouchers across four rounds from 1 March 2021. A Victorian first, the program provides sport vouchers to help kids from Victorian families with the cost of membership and registration fees, sports equipment and uniforms. To be eligible kids need to be 4 to 18 years old, a resident in Victoria, named on a current Australian Government Health Care Card or Pensioner Concession Card and also named on a valid Australian Government Medicare Card at the time of application. The program is also supporting sport clubs and active recreation providers broaden their memberships, providing them with additional revenue to help recover from the impacts of the coronavirus (COVID-19). The Get Active Kids Voucher Program is part of the Get Active Victoria initiative, which is helping families to move more, every day with ideas, tips and tools to motivate and support people to be more active– like guided workout videos, articles and a free activity tracker. Get Active Victoria has something for everyone regardless of their level of activity or fitness. It’s part of a package that also includes the $24.2 million Active Schools Program, delivering more opportunities for kids to get more active both at school, home and in the community, because active kids are not just happy, healthy and resilient kids, but they are better able to focus in class. Applications for vouchers in round one of the program open 1 March 2021 and close 11 April 2021. To apply online or for more information about the program including dates for future rounds visit https://www.getactive.vic.gov.au/  Quotes attributable to Member for Monbulk James Merlino MP “The Get Active Kids Voucher Program is a great opportunity for eligible families to get their kids in to local sport without breaking the budget.” “Grassroots sports clubs in Monbulk are the heart and soul of our community bringing people together and creating healthier, happier, and more united communities, our vulnerable kids deserve to be a part of this.”

Vouchers To Give Kids In Yarra Ranges & Knox a Sporting Chance

The Andrews Labor Government is getting on with levelling the playing field with vouchers worth up to $200 each available for our state’s most vulnerable families to put towards the cost of their kids playing the sports they love. Member for Monbulk James Merlino MP today encouraged eligible families in Monbulk to take advantage of the $21 million Get Active Kids Voucher Program, which is rolling out up to 100,000 vouchers across four rounds from 1 March 2021. A Victorian first, the program provides sport vouchers to help kids from Victorian families with the cost of membership and registration fees, sports equipment and uniforms. To be eligible kids need to be 4 to 18 years old, a resident in Victoria, named on a current Australian Government Health Care Card or Pensioner Concession Card and also named on a valid Australian Government Medicare Card at the time of application. The program is also supporting sport clubs and active recreation providers broaden their memberships, providing them with additional revenue to help recover from the impacts of the coronavirus (COVID-19). The Get Active Kids Voucher Program is part of the Get Active Victoria initiative, which is helping families to move more, every day with ideas, tips and tools to motivate and support people to be more active– like guided workout videos, articles and a free activity tracker. Get Active Victoria has something for everyone regardless of their level of activity or fitness. It’s part of a package that also includes the $24.2 million Active Schools Program, delivering more opportunities for kids to get more active both at school, home and in the community, because active kids are not just happy, healthy and resilient kids, but they are better able to focus in class. Applications for vouchers in round one of the program open 1 March 2021 and close 11 April 2021. To apply online or for more information about the program including dates for future rounds visit https://www.getactive.vic.gov.au/  Quotes attributable to Member for Monbulk James Merlino MP “The Get Active Kids Voucher Program is a great opportunity for eligible families to get their kids in to local sport without breaking the budget.” “Grassroots sports clubs in Monbulk are the heart and soul of our community bringing people together and creating healthier, happier, and more united communities, our vulnerable kids deserve to be a part of this.”