• 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

Young Leaders To Indonesia Program To Continue

The life-changing Victorian Young Leaders to Indonesia program will continue for another year thanks to a $545,000 Andrews Labor Government funding boost to provide immersive learning experiences for students. The Minister for Education James Merlino made the announcement while observing the inaugural Victorian Young Leaders in action in Yogyakarta. The funding will extend the Victorian Young Leaders to Indonesia program, which this year offers a six-week language and cultural overseas immersion program for 39 year 9 students and accompanying teachers. This will give another 40 year 9 students and accompanying teachers the opportunity to take part in the six-week language and cultural overseas immersion program in 2020. The Labor Government funding boost will also ensure rural, regional and low-SES students will have access to fully funded places in the program. Indonesian language is taught at more Victorian government schools than any other language. Students taking part in the program will attend a local school and visiting places of cultural significance. They will have the chance to form lifelong friendships and networks with their peers who live in Indonesia. For students studying Indonesian, the immersive nature of the program significantly accelerates Indonesian language learning and abilities. The culturally rich program has a transformative impact on student learning and engagement, broadening possibilities for a future career in a globalised world. Beyond study, students will explore the sights and sounds of Indonesia, encompassing both traditional and contemporary culture. Mr Merlino also travelled Indonesia to meet with students, teachers and school leaders participating in the program. The trip also included a visit to India to meet with students, teachers and school leaders participating in two other Labor Government programs: Victorian Young Leaders to India and Women in School Leadership. Mr Merlino also visited Singapore to meet with principal and teacher associations to discuss best practice around training and support for teachers, as well as visit a high-rise school. Quotes attributable to Minister for Education James Merlino “In an increasingly global world, the opportunity to learn from different schools in different countries is extremely important – that’s why we are investing $545,000 to provide immersive learning experiences for students.” “Extending this program contributes to developing a generation of young Victorians with a deep understanding of our closest neighbour.” Download the Media Release (211 KB)

Young Leaders To Indonesia Program To Continue

The life-changing Victorian Young Leaders to Indonesia program will continue for another year thanks to a $545,000 Andrews Labor Government funding boost to provide immersive learning experiences for students. The Minister for Education James Merlino made the announcement while observing the inaugural Victorian Young Leaders in action in Yogyakarta. The funding will extend the Victorian Young Leaders to Indonesia program, which this year offers a six-week language and cultural overseas immersion program for 39 year 9 students and accompanying teachers. This will give another 40 year 9 students and accompanying teachers the opportunity to take part in the six-week language and cultural overseas immersion program in 2020. The Labor Government funding boost will also ensure rural, regional and low-SES students will have access to fully funded places in the program. Indonesian language is taught at more Victorian government schools than any other language. Students taking part in the program will attend a local school and visiting places of cultural significance. They will have the chance to form lifelong friendships and networks with their peers who live in Indonesia. For students studying Indonesian, the immersive nature of the program significantly accelerates Indonesian language learning and abilities. The culturally rich program has a transformative impact on student learning and engagement, broadening possibilities for a future career in a globalised world. Beyond study, students will explore the sights and sounds of Indonesia, encompassing both traditional and contemporary culture. Mr Merlino also travelled Indonesia to meet with students, teachers and school leaders participating in the program. The trip also included a visit to India to meet with students, teachers and school leaders participating in two other Labor Government programs: Victorian Young Leaders to India and Women in School Leadership. Mr Merlino also visited Singapore to meet with principal and teacher associations to discuss best practice around training and support for teachers, as well as visit a high-rise school. Quotes attributable to Minister for Education James Merlino “In an increasingly global world, the opportunity to learn from different schools in different countries is extremely important – that’s why we are investing $545,000 to provide immersive learning experiences for students.” “Extending this program contributes to developing a generation of young Victorians with a deep understanding of our closest neighbour.” Download the Media Release (211 KB)

Celebrating Excellence In Victorian Schools

A primary school teacher passionate about raising literacy standards, a school supporting and promoting Koorie culture and a principal who has advocated for strong student voice and leadership are among the finalists acknowledged by the Andrews Labor Government in this year’s Victorian Education Excellence Awards. Acting Minister for Education Gayle Tierney congratulated the 35 finalists across 12 award categories. The awards recognise inspirational teachers, principals, business managers and education support staff. Among the finalists: Jane Donaldson, Westmeadows Primary School principal who has been an unwavering champion for student voice Lara Secondary College: has introduced a range of programs and initiatives to promote Koorie culture, inclusion and achievement, including events such as NAIDOC week and an Indigenous Literacy Day Camperdown College teacher Jacinta Tolland who worked tirelessly to improve literacy in her school All winners are awarded professional development grants of up to $25,000 to support their work in schools. The Labor Government is building the Education State where every student can access a great local school and get a great education, which involves having great teachers at the forefront of our classrooms to help kids thrive. That’s why the Victorian Education Excellence Award winners will receive grants to undertake professional development and learning, to ensure our teachers are well supported to lead great careers in the Education State. Winners will be announced at a ceremony to coincide with Australia’s celebration of World Teachers’ Day on 25 October. The Lindsay Thompson Award for Excellence in Education will also be awarded on the night. More information about the awards and finalists is available at www.education.vic.gov.au/veea Quotes attributable to Acting Minister for Education Gayle Tierney “The Victorian Education Excellence Awards are the state’s most prestigious celebration of the outstanding education professionals who go that extra mile to help young Victorians thrive at school.” “Our teachers, principals and education professionals do a crucial job in educating our young people. These awards are a fantastic opportunity to recognise Victorians who dedicate their careers to education.” Download the Media Release (232 KB)

Celebrating Excellence In Victorian Schools

A primary school teacher passionate about raising literacy standards, a school supporting and promoting Koorie culture and a principal who has advocated for strong student voice and leadership are among the finalists acknowledged by the Andrews Labor Government in this year’s Victorian Education Excellence Awards. Acting Minister for Education Gayle Tierney congratulated the 35 finalists across 12 award categories. The awards recognise inspirational teachers, principals, business managers and education support staff. Among the finalists: Jane Donaldson, Westmeadows Primary School principal who has been an unwavering champion for student voice Lara Secondary College: has introduced a range of programs and initiatives to promote Koorie culture, inclusion and achievement, including events such as NAIDOC week and an Indigenous Literacy Day Camperdown College teacher Jacinta Tolland who worked tirelessly to improve literacy in her school All winners are awarded professional development grants of up to $25,000 to support their work in schools. The Labor Government is building the Education State where every student can access a great local school and get a great education, which involves having great teachers at the forefront of our classrooms to help kids thrive. That’s why the Victorian Education Excellence Award winners will receive grants to undertake professional development and learning, to ensure our teachers are well supported to lead great careers in the Education State. Winners will be announced at a ceremony to coincide with Australia’s celebration of World Teachers’ Day on 25 October. The Lindsay Thompson Award for Excellence in Education will also be awarded on the night. More information about the awards and finalists is available at www.education.vic.gov.au/veea Quotes attributable to Acting Minister for Education Gayle Tierney “The Victorian Education Excellence Awards are the state’s most prestigious celebration of the outstanding education professionals who go that extra mile to help young Victorians thrive at school.” “Our teachers, principals and education professionals do a crucial job in educating our young people. These awards are a fantastic opportunity to recognise Victorians who dedicate their careers to education.” Download the Media Release (232 KB)

Terms Of Reference Set For NAPLAN Review

The Victorian, New South Wales and Queensland governments have released the Terms of Reference for their broad review of NAPLAN and standardised testing of school students. The Review will identify what a standardised testing regime in Australian schools should deliver, assess how well NAPLAN achieves this, and identify short and longer-term improvements that can be made. While a form of standardised test will always be needed, this review will include looking at whether NAPLAN should continue in its current form. The review will consider whether NAPLAN is meeting the needs of governments, schools, parents and students – including how accurate and appropriate the test is, whether the right year levels are being tested and how well the test assesses student and system performance over time. The Review will draw on evidence from international assessment programs and other recent reviews of NAPLAN to identify best practice and inform the Review’s recommendations.  A panel of education experts will lead the review including Emeritus Professor Barry McGaw, Professor Claire Wyatt-Smith and Emeritus Professor William Louden. The panel will present their interim findings and immediate improvements to Education Council in December, and a final report in 2020. A full list of the terms of reference is available at www.education.vic.gov.au/about/programs/Pages/naplan-review.aspx. Quotes attributable to Victorian Education Minister James Merlino “NAPLAN has been in place for more than decade – it is common sense to review it and see what changes we should make to ensure it is meeting the needs of schools, parents and students.” “The review may lead to significant change or it may recommend scrapping NAPLAN all together and replacing it with something new – but we will always need some form of standardised testing.” Download the Media Release (203 KB)

Terms Of Reference Set For NAPLAN Review

The Victorian, New South Wales and Queensland governments have released the Terms of Reference for their broad review of NAPLAN and standardised testing of school students. The Review will identify what a standardised testing regime in Australian schools should deliver, assess how well NAPLAN achieves this, and identify short and longer-term improvements that can be made. While a form of standardised test will always be needed, this review will include looking at whether NAPLAN should continue in its current form. The review will consider whether NAPLAN is meeting the needs of governments, schools, parents and students – including how accurate and appropriate the test is, whether the right year levels are being tested and how well the test assesses student and system performance over time. The Review will draw on evidence from international assessment programs and other recent reviews of NAPLAN to identify best practice and inform the Review’s recommendations.  A panel of education experts will lead the review including Emeritus Professor Barry McGaw, Professor Claire Wyatt-Smith and Emeritus Professor William Louden. The panel will present their interim findings and immediate improvements to Education Council in December, and a final report in 2020. A full list of the terms of reference is available at www.education.vic.gov.au/about/programs/Pages/naplan-review.aspx. Quotes attributable to Victorian Education Minister James Merlino “NAPLAN has been in place for more than decade – it is common sense to review it and see what changes we should make to ensure it is meeting the needs of schools, parents and students.” “The review may lead to significant change or it may recommend scrapping NAPLAN all together and replacing it with something new – but we will always need some form of standardised testing.” Download the Media Release (203 KB)

Delivering Leading Edge Facilities For Coburg

Coburg High School students now have the state-of-the-art facilities they need to achieve their best, thanks to a $1.9 million investment by the Andrews Labor Government. Education Minister James Merlino and Member for Pascoe Vale Lizzie Blandthorn today visited Coburg High School to officially open the school’s facilities upgrade, featuring modernised classrooms and a brand new outdoor learning area. Designed by architect Kennedy Nolan and built by CA Property Group, Coburg students now have a STEAM room, incorporating science, technology, engineering, arts and mathematics, as well as a student study lounge, breakout and collaboration areas. A series of refurbished general purpose classrooms allows students to work individually or in groups, and a brand new central outdoor learning space promotes learning, gathering and play. New and modern school buildings contribute to school pride for students, parents and the wider community, building their engagement with education and ensuring students have the 21st century learning environment they need to be their best. The Labor Government has invested $6.1. billion to deliver more than 1,400 school upgrades, supporting over 7500 construction jobs for Victorians. A total of 100 new schools will open by 2026 under the Labor  Government’s school building boom, ensuring every child has a great local school and a great start in life. This building boom will continue over the coming years, with the government delivering 11 new schools across the state due to open in 2020. Quotes attributable to Minister for Education James Merlino “Every student deserves access to a great local school and we’re getting on with the job of building better schools right across Victoria.” “It’s fantastic to see students here at Coburg High School putting their new school facilities to use.” Quote attributable to Member for Pascoe Vale Lizzie Blandthorn “I’m delighted to see students in Coburg are getting access to the kind of facilities that will truly make a difference to their learning and to their lives.” Download the Media Release (215 KB)

Delivering Leading Edge Facilities For Coburg

Coburg High School students now have the state-of-the-art facilities they need to achieve their best, thanks to a $1.9 million investment by the Andrews Labor Government. Education Minister James Merlino and Member for Pascoe Vale Lizzie Blandthorn today visited Coburg High School to officially open the school’s facilities upgrade, featuring modernised classrooms and a brand new outdoor learning area. Designed by architect Kennedy Nolan and built by CA Property Group, Coburg students now have a STEAM room, incorporating science, technology, engineering, arts and mathematics, as well as a student study lounge, breakout and collaboration areas. A series of refurbished general purpose classrooms allows students to work individually or in groups, and a brand new central outdoor learning space promotes learning, gathering and play. New and modern school buildings contribute to school pride for students, parents and the wider community, building their engagement with education and ensuring students have the 21st century learning environment they need to be their best. The Labor Government has invested $6.1. billion to deliver more than 1,400 school upgrades, supporting over 7500 construction jobs for Victorians. A total of 100 new schools will open by 2026 under the Labor  Government’s school building boom, ensuring every child has a great local school and a great start in life. This building boom will continue over the coming years, with the government delivering 11 new schools across the state due to open in 2020. Quotes attributable to Minister for Education James Merlino “Every student deserves access to a great local school and we’re getting on with the job of building better schools right across Victoria.” “It’s fantastic to see students here at Coburg High School putting their new school facilities to use.” Quote attributable to Member for Pascoe Vale Lizzie Blandthorn “I’m delighted to see students in Coburg are getting access to the kind of facilities that will truly make a difference to their learning and to their lives.” Download the Media Release (215 KB)

More Support To Attract The Best Teachers To The Regions

Victoria’s best and brightest teachers will be offered incentives of up to $50,000 each to relocate to rural and regional schools, as part of $45.2 million investment by the Andrews Labor Government to bridge the divide between student results in the regions and the city. The funding is part of a wider initial package to support recommendations from the Expert Advisory Panel for Rural and Regional Students set to be announced today by Premier Daniel Andrews and Minister for Education James Merlino. The incentives aim to increase the attractiveness of teaching positions in rural and regional schools and include: $12.5 million that will go towards offering the best teachers up to $50,000 to relocate to country areas to fill hard-to-staff positions, as well as a range of non-financial support to assist with relocation, such as help with finding housing. Teachers will also be eligible for retention payments of up to $9,000 per year in their first three years if they remain in these roles $12.9 million to support school leaders with additional expert Turnaround Teams to work with individual schools facing the greatest barriers to addressing underperformance $7 million to fund additional Executive Class Principals to take on the most challenging, complex and specialised school leadership roles $12.8 million to increase the number of high-quality teachers specialising in VET and VCAL so that more students from country areas can access and complete apprenticeships, traineeships and further education. Professionals from a range of industries will be also be retrained as VET qualified teachers. Grants will be available to schools to share VET trainers between schools and TAFEs, and VET and VCAL teachers will have access to professional learning programs and scholarships. The Labor Government is getting on with building the Education State so that every student can access a great local school and a quality education, no matter where they live. Quotes attributable to Minister for Education James Merlino “Our priority is making sure all students – no matter where they live – have the best possible start in life and are able to attend a great local school and get a great education.” “We know that the quality of teaching is one of the greatest influences on student performance, which is why we’re making record investments to attract high quality teachers and principals to our country schools.”  “We have heard first hand that the divide between schools in the regions and the city is one of the biggest issues facing our schools and that is why we are getting on with the job of fixing it.” Download the Media Release (220 KB)

More Support To Attract The Best Teachers To The Regions

Victoria’s best and brightest teachers will be offered incentives of up to $50,000 each to relocate to rural and regional schools, as part of $45.2 million investment by the Andrews Labor Government to bridge the divide between student results in the regions and the city. The funding is part of a wider initial package to support recommendations from the Expert Advisory Panel for Rural and Regional Students set to be announced today by Premier Daniel Andrews and Minister for Education James Merlino. The incentives aim to increase the attractiveness of teaching positions in rural and regional schools and include: $12.5 million that will go towards offering the best teachers up to $50,000 to relocate to country areas to fill hard-to-staff positions, as well as a range of non-financial support to assist with relocation, such as help with finding housing. Teachers will also be eligible for retention payments of up to $9,000 per year in their first three years if they remain in these roles $12.9 million to support school leaders with additional expert Turnaround Teams to work with individual schools facing the greatest barriers to addressing underperformance $7 million to fund additional Executive Class Principals to take on the most challenging, complex and specialised school leadership roles $12.8 million to increase the number of high-quality teachers specialising in VET and VCAL so that more students from country areas can access and complete apprenticeships, traineeships and further education. Professionals from a range of industries will be also be retrained as VET qualified teachers. Grants will be available to schools to share VET trainers between schools and TAFEs, and VET and VCAL teachers will have access to professional learning programs and scholarships. The Labor Government is getting on with building the Education State so that every student can access a great local school and a quality education, no matter where they live. Quotes attributable to Minister for Education James Merlino “Our priority is making sure all students – no matter where they live – have the best possible start in life and are able to attend a great local school and get a great education.” “We know that the quality of teaching is one of the greatest influences on student performance, which is why we’re making record investments to attract high quality teachers and principals to our country schools.”  “We have heard first hand that the divide between schools in the regions and the city is one of the biggest issues facing our schools and that is why we are getting on with the job of fixing it.” Download the Media Release (220 KB)

Celebrating Inspiring Early Childhood Work In Victoria

Early childhood educators and programs whose work improves the lives of children and their families across the state are being recognised and celebrated by the Andrews Labor Government. Minister for Education James Merlino today announced the 20 finalists in this year’s Victorian Early Years Awards. These finalists were nominated for their outstanding contributions to the early childhood sector in across Victoria. Finalists include a bush playgroup incorporating local Aboriginal knowledge in Balnarring, a child health and development hub for refugee families in Roxburgh Park, a literacy program in the Wimmera and a campaign that is helping families in Heidelberg West participate in book-making projects. Now in its 14th year, the Victorian Early Years Awards recognise the crucial work of early childhood professionals in helping young children to learn and thrive. The announcement coincides with Early Learning Matters week, running from 31st August to 6th September. Award winners in each category will receive up to $15,000 to continue their exceptional work in kindergarten services, schools, local councils, Maternal Child and Health services and other early years organisations across the state. The awards celebrate the achievements and commitment of early childhood professionals across seven award categories, including supporting parents and the early childhood teacher of the year. Early childhood education is the foundation for lifelong wellbeing and learning, and the Labor Government is committed to expanding services delivered to children and their families. Making Victoria the Education State starts with the early years. This is why, in an Australian first, the Labor Government is investing almost $5 billion over the next decade to deliver 15 hours per week of funded three-year-old kindergarten programs, to be progressively rolled out from 2020. Winners will be announced at an awards ceremony on Tuesday 22 October at the National Gallery of Victoria. For more details on this year’s finalists, see: https://www.education.vic.gov.au/about/awards/Pages/veya-finalists-2019.aspx Quotes attributable to Minister for Education, James Merlino “The Victorian Early Years Awards are a fantastic opportunity to recognise our early childhood professionals, and the inspiring work they do every day to set our youngest Victorians up for success in life.” “To every early childhood professional and service making a difference across Victoria – thank you for your dedication to children and their families, helping them to thrive and get the most out of their early childhood education.” Download the Media Release (216 KB)

Celebrating Inspiring Early Childhood Work In Victoria

Early childhood educators and programs whose work improves the lives of children and their families across the state are being recognised and celebrated by the Andrews Labor Government. Minister for Education James Merlino today announced the 20 finalists in this year’s Victorian Early Years Awards. These finalists were nominated for their outstanding contributions to the early childhood sector in across Victoria. Finalists include a bush playgroup incorporating local Aboriginal knowledge in Balnarring, a child health and development hub for refugee families in Roxburgh Park, a literacy program in the Wimmera and a campaign that is helping families in Heidelberg West participate in book-making projects. Now in its 14th year, the Victorian Early Years Awards recognise the crucial work of early childhood professionals in helping young children to learn and thrive. The announcement coincides with Early Learning Matters week, running from 31st August to 6th September. Award winners in each category will receive up to $15,000 to continue their exceptional work in kindergarten services, schools, local councils, Maternal Child and Health services and other early years organisations across the state. The awards celebrate the achievements and commitment of early childhood professionals across seven award categories, including supporting parents and the early childhood teacher of the year. Early childhood education is the foundation for lifelong wellbeing and learning, and the Labor Government is committed to expanding services delivered to children and their families. Making Victoria the Education State starts with the early years. This is why, in an Australian first, the Labor Government is investing almost $5 billion over the next decade to deliver 15 hours per week of funded three-year-old kindergarten programs, to be progressively rolled out from 2020. Winners will be announced at an awards ceremony on Tuesday 22 October at the National Gallery of Victoria. For more details on this year’s finalists, see: https://www.education.vic.gov.au/about/awards/Pages/veya-finalists-2019.aspx Quotes attributable to Minister for Education, James Merlino “The Victorian Early Years Awards are a fantastic opportunity to recognise our early childhood professionals, and the inspiring work they do every day to set our youngest Victorians up for success in life.” “To every early childhood professional and service making a difference across Victoria – thank you for your dedication to children and their families, helping them to thrive and get the most out of their early childhood education.” Download the Media Release (216 KB)

Designs For New World-Class Shepparton School Unveiled

Shepparton families are one step closer to having the exceptional facilities they deserve, with the Andrews Labor Government unveiling its designs for the city’s new secondary school today. Minister for Education James Merlino visited Shepparton High School to launch the designs for the new secondary school, which will offer students broader subject choices, new learning and pathway opportunities and better student support in state-of-the-art facilities. The designs support the school’s focus on having the advantages of facilities of a big school, while maintaining the feel of a smaller school environment. It will be based around three ‘neighbourhood’ buildings made up of three small houses, with about 50 students in each year level, each with their own library to help students feel at home. Student wellbeing is a key part of the designs with dedicated spaces in each house as well as a central hub where students can access health and wellbeing providers. The designs also include two specialised learning precincts. The Enterprise and Innovation Centre will be the heart for the school and a place to welcome the broader community. The centre will feature arts, science, food technology and technology spaces. The other precinct is the gymnasium with dedicated spaces for sports sciences, physical education, sport, health, fitness and movement. Two thirds of the school site is devoted to outdoor space for recreation, wellbeing and education, enabling learning to take place in many settings, and ensuring there are ample indoor and outdoor sports facilities. Architects Gray Puksand worked closely with students, teachers and the wider community to gain their input for the design of the new school. To view the school designs, visit schoolbuildings.vic.gov.au/schools/Pages/GreaterSheppartonCollege.aspx. The Labor Government has committed $21.5 million to make the long-term Shepparton Education Plan – including the new Greater Shepparton College (interim name) – a reality. Minister Merlino also announced further consultation had commenced on the name of the new school and encouraged the community to have their say. To have your say, visit engage.vic.gov.au/SheppartonEducationPlan. Quotes attributable to Education Minister James Merlino “The new school has been designed from the ground up to best suit the needs of every future Shepparton student, and I’m proud to be here today to mark this important milestone with the community.” “Despite the best efforts of our teachers and schools, student outcomes in the Shepparton region are not as good as they should be and we need to do something about it.” Download the Media Release (221 KB)

Designs For New World-Class Shepparton School Unveiled

Shepparton families are one step closer to having the exceptional facilities they deserve, with the Andrews Labor Government unveiling its designs for the city’s new secondary school today. Minister for Education James Merlino visited Shepparton High School to launch the designs for the new secondary school, which will offer students broader subject choices, new learning and pathway opportunities and better student support in state-of-the-art facilities. The designs support the school’s focus on having the advantages of facilities of a big school, while maintaining the feel of a smaller school environment. It will be based around three ‘neighbourhood’ buildings made up of three small houses, with about 50 students in each year level, each with their own library to help students feel at home. Student wellbeing is a key part of the designs with dedicated spaces in each house as well as a central hub where students can access health and wellbeing providers. The designs also include two specialised learning precincts. The Enterprise and Innovation Centre will be the heart for the school and a place to welcome the broader community. The centre will feature arts, science, food technology and technology spaces. The other precinct is the gymnasium with dedicated spaces for sports sciences, physical education, sport, health, fitness and movement. Two thirds of the school site is devoted to outdoor space for recreation, wellbeing and education, enabling learning to take place in many settings, and ensuring there are ample indoor and outdoor sports facilities. Architects Gray Puksand worked closely with students, teachers and the wider community to gain their input for the design of the new school. To view the school designs, visit schoolbuildings.vic.gov.au/schools/Pages/GreaterSheppartonCollege.aspx. The Labor Government has committed $21.5 million to make the long-term Shepparton Education Plan – including the new Greater Shepparton College (interim name) – a reality. Minister Merlino also announced further consultation had commenced on the name of the new school and encouraged the community to have their say. To have your say, visit engage.vic.gov.au/SheppartonEducationPlan. Quotes attributable to Education Minister James Merlino “The new school has been designed from the ground up to best suit the needs of every future Shepparton student, and I’m proud to be here today to mark this important milestone with the community.” “Despite the best efforts of our teachers and schools, student outcomes in the Shepparton region are not as good as they should be and we need to do something about it.” Download the Media Release (221 KB)

Massive Maintenance Blitz To Upgrade Ballarat Schools

Every single Victorian government school will get a share of $515 million in the single largest boost to school maintenance ever undertaken, thanks to an unprecedented investment by the Andrews Labor Government. Parliamentary Secretary for Schools Tim Richardson and the Member for Wendouree Juliana Addison today visited Ballarat High School – which will receive just over $855,000 – to announce $3.6 million in maintenance funding would be allocated to 31 state schools in Ballarat. These schools include: Ballarat Specialist School: $338,000 Yuille Park P-8 Community College: $315,000 Phoenix P-12 Community College: $262,000 The funding will ensure existing buildings at Victoria’s 1,500 state schools are safe, modern and properly maintained, and builds on the Labor Government’s historic $5.6 billion investment in new and upgraded schools. The investment will more than double funding for maintenance at Victoria’s state schools over the next two financial years, with more than $300 million to be invested in 2019/20 and $290 million in 2020/21. It will enable schools to do essential works such as painting, replacing carpet and windows, landscaping, tree inspections and maintenance of infrastructure like septic systems and water services. This increased investment will enable principals to get on with the job of leading Victoria’s schools, by providing more funds to maintain the state’s 36,000 school buildings, while supporting schools to cater to the 115,000 additional students who are expected to enter the education system over the next five years. The Labor Government is investing $170.5 million in emergency and incident response over five years, including an extra $57.8 million to address issues such as septic system failure, termite damage, mould, roof and floor damage, and $76.4 million to respond to unforeseen incidents and events such as storms, fire or flooding. Schools in some of the state’s highest-risk bushfire areas will also have access to more funds to ensure they are ‘bushfire ready’, thanks to $44.2 million over five years for fire preparedness activities like vegetation removal. Quote attributable to Minister for Education James Merlino “Every single one of Victoria’s more than 1,500 state schools will benefit from this investment. Quote attributable to Parliamentary Secretary for Schools Tim Richardson “We are not only building new schools, but we’re looking after the existing school buildings across Victoria.” Quote attributable to Member for Wendouree Juliana Addison “This is the single biggest investment in school maintenance in Victoria. It will future proof our schools.” Quote attributable to Member for Buninyong Michaela Settle “This funding will help Ballarat schools undertake essential maintenance – from new carpets to new roofing.” Download the Media Release (233 KB)

Massive Maintenance Blitz To Upgrade Ballarat Schools

Every single Victorian government school will get a share of $515 million in the single largest boost to school maintenance ever undertaken, thanks to an unprecedented investment by the Andrews Labor Government. Parliamentary Secretary for Schools Tim Richardson and the Member for Wendouree Juliana Addison today visited Ballarat High School – which will receive just over $855,000 – to announce $3.6 million in maintenance funding would be allocated to 31 state schools in Ballarat. These schools include: Ballarat Specialist School: $338,000 Yuille Park P-8 Community College: $315,000 Phoenix P-12 Community College: $262,000 The funding will ensure existing buildings at Victoria’s 1,500 state schools are safe, modern and properly maintained, and builds on the Labor Government’s historic $5.6 billion investment in new and upgraded schools. The investment will more than double funding for maintenance at Victoria’s state schools over the next two financial years, with more than $300 million to be invested in 2019/20 and $290 million in 2020/21. It will enable schools to do essential works such as painting, replacing carpet and windows, landscaping, tree inspections and maintenance of infrastructure like septic systems and water services. This increased investment will enable principals to get on with the job of leading Victoria’s schools, by providing more funds to maintain the state’s 36,000 school buildings, while supporting schools to cater to the 115,000 additional students who are expected to enter the education system over the next five years. The Labor Government is investing $170.5 million in emergency and incident response over five years, including an extra $57.8 million to address issues such as septic system failure, termite damage, mould, roof and floor damage, and $76.4 million to respond to unforeseen incidents and events such as storms, fire or flooding. Schools in some of the state’s highest-risk bushfire areas will also have access to more funds to ensure they are ‘bushfire ready’, thanks to $44.2 million over five years for fire preparedness activities like vegetation removal. Quote attributable to Minister for Education James Merlino “Every single one of Victoria’s more than 1,500 state schools will benefit from this investment. Quote attributable to Parliamentary Secretary for Schools Tim Richardson “We are not only building new schools, but we’re looking after the existing school buildings across Victoria.” Quote attributable to Member for Wendouree Juliana Addison “This is the single biggest investment in school maintenance in Victoria. It will future proof our schools.” Quote attributable to Member for Buninyong Michaela Settle “This funding will help Ballarat schools undertake essential maintenance – from new carpets to new roofing.” Download the Media Release (233 KB)

 

Lifting The Bar For Year 9 Students

A special principal advisory committee will immediately begin investigating options to improve the relevance of NAPLAN for Year 9 students. The latest NAPLAN results show the Education State reforms are working, with Victoria’s primary students leading the nation and Year 7 results on the rise. However, Year 9 students are not showing the same improvements. Year 9 students across the country in both government and non-government schools experienced similar flat results. Year 9 has long been considered the hardest cohort to engage in education. Schools report this year level doesn’t always see the relevance of NAPLAN tests or take them seriously. It also doesn’t reflect what Year 9 students are capable of, or the hard work of principals and teachers in the classroom. The special committee will consult with teachers, parents and students, and come up with ideas to improve the relevance of the test for Year 9 students. The committee will consider a range of ideas including, for example, the introduction of a proficiency certificate based on student reading and numeracy results. Students would use the certificate to guide their selection of Year 11 or 12 subjects, plan their working life beyond school and include it in their careers portfolio when seeking a part-time job. Making this connection between a student’s efforts in Year 9 and their career would encourage them to give their best efforts when they sit NAPLAN. The Andrews Labor Government has also asked for the upcoming NAPLAN review by NSW, QLD and VIC to examine whether the year levels that currently sit NAPLAN are most appropriate for standardised testing. The change could include moving NAPLAN tests from Years 3, 5, 7 and 9 to Years 4, 6, 8 and 10. This would give secondary schools more timely information about achievement levels of students as they transition from primary school and would better enable students to use their results as they consider senior secondary choices. The Labor Government has already introduced intensive support for struggling students in Year 8 to 10 through the $183 million Middle Years Literacy and Numeracy program. The program gives students in these years who have below-minimum literacy and numeracy skills direct, individual support and tuition by specifically-trained teachers. The Labor Government is also reducing distraction in the classroom and supporting the mental health of students in these formative years by introducing a mobile phone ban in all state schools in 2020 and ensuring every government secondary school has access to a qualified mental health practitioner. Quotes attributable to Minister for Education James Merlino “These results don’t reflect what students are capable of and we must investigate options to ensure our Year 9 students are more engaged. This is about making the test more relevant, not adding unnecessary stress to NAPLAN.” “There may be mixed views about these ideas, but we want to hear from principals, teachers, parents and students about how we can make NAPLAN relevant and ensure Year 9 students are engaged and giving it their best shot.” “We will always need a form of standardised testing to understand where we need to make improvements and investments – that’s why it is important to undertake this work and make sure we are getting it right.” Download the Media Release (221 KB)

Lifting The Bar For Year 9 Students

A special principal advisory committee will immediately begin investigating options to improve the relevance of NAPLAN for Year 9 students. The latest NAPLAN results show the Education State reforms are working, with Victoria’s primary students leading the nation and Year 7 results on the rise. However, Year 9 students are not showing the same improvements. Year 9 students across the country in both government and non-government schools experienced similar flat results. Year 9 has long been considered the hardest cohort to engage in education. Schools report this year level doesn’t always see the relevance of NAPLAN tests or take them seriously. It also doesn’t reflect what Year 9 students are capable of, or the hard work of principals and teachers in the classroom. The special committee will consult with teachers, parents and students, and come up with ideas to improve the relevance of the test for Year 9 students. The committee will consider a range of ideas including, for example, the introduction of a proficiency certificate based on student reading and numeracy results. Students would use the certificate to guide their selection of Year 11 or 12 subjects, plan their working life beyond school and include it in their careers portfolio when seeking a part-time job. Making this connection between a student’s efforts in Year 9 and their career would encourage them to give their best efforts when they sit NAPLAN. The Andrews Labor Government has also asked for the upcoming NAPLAN review by NSW, QLD and VIC to examine whether the year levels that currently sit NAPLAN are most appropriate for standardised testing. The change could include moving NAPLAN tests from Years 3, 5, 7 and 9 to Years 4, 6, 8 and 10. This would give secondary schools more timely information about achievement levels of students as they transition from primary school and would better enable students to use their results as they consider senior secondary choices. The Labor Government has already introduced intensive support for struggling students in Year 8 to 10 through the $183 million Middle Years Literacy and Numeracy program. The program gives students in these years who have below-minimum literacy and numeracy skills direct, individual support and tuition by specifically-trained teachers. The Labor Government is also reducing distraction in the classroom and supporting the mental health of students in these formative years by introducing a mobile phone ban in all state schools in 2020 and ensuring every government secondary school has access to a qualified mental health practitioner. Quotes attributable to Minister for Education James Merlino “These results don’t reflect what students are capable of and we must investigate options to ensure our Year 9 students are more engaged. This is about making the test more relevant, not adding unnecessary stress to NAPLAN.” “There may be mixed views about these ideas, but we want to hear from principals, teachers, parents and students about how we can make NAPLAN relevant and ensure Year 9 students are engaged and giving it their best shot.” “We will always need a form of standardised testing to understand where we need to make improvements and investments – that’s why it is important to undertake this work and make sure we are getting it right.” Download the Media Release (221 KB)

Victoria Continues To Lead Nation In NAPLAN

Victorian students continue to outperform other states and lead the nation in education with today’s NAPLAN results confirming the Andrews Labor Government’s Education State reforms are producing real results. Victoria’s primary schools achieved the best results in the country in seven out of 10 measures, up from 2018 when we led on four of the 10 measures. Primary schools also improved on their own excellent results from 2018 on six out of 10 measures, including numeracy where we achieved higher average scores and levels of excellence than all other states and territories. Nearly 45 per cent of Year 3 and 33 per cent of Year 5 students now achieve results in the top two bands, the best in the country. This is an improvement on last year’s figures of 44 per cent and 31 per cent respectively. In reading, nearly 60 per cent of Year 3 and more than 40 per cent of Year 5 students were in the top two bands – more than in any other jurisdiction in Year 3 and ahead of all other jurisdictions except the ACT in Year 5. Importantly, the results show we are successfully addressing disadvantage by continuing to lift more primary students out of the bottom three bands in numeracy. Victoria’s secondary results also showed improvements in key areas. In the critical domains of reading, writing and numeracy, our Year 7 students are the best in the country – excluding the ACT – and have improved since last year. We saw a significant increase in the number of Year 7 students achieving high levels of excellence. In numeracy, 36 per cent of Year 7 students achieved results in the top two bands compared to 31 per cent in 2018, while in reading 30.4 per cent of Year 7 students achieved results in the top two bands compared to 28.5 per cent in 2018. These results are clear evidence that the Education State reforms are working. While these results are encouraging, we know there is more we need to do to lift Year 9 performance. In results that were similar across the country, Year 9 students did not improve on last year’s results in several domains. That is why the Labor Government will appoint a special principal advisory committee to immediately investigate options to improve the relevance of NAPLAN for Year 9 students. This will include exploring ideas such as the introduction of a proficiency certificate and changing the year level the test is conducted to ensure the test is relevant to Year 9 students. The Labor Government is already taking action to target improvement in Year 9 by investing $183 million for intensive literacy and numeracy teaching support to secondary students. This initiative started rolling out this year. Quotes attributable to Minister for Education James Merlino “Victorian students have again achieved excellent results in the 2019 NAPLAN tests, with our primary schools continuing to forge ahead and extend the gap between us and other states.” “We are making significant improvements across Years 3, 5 and 7, but we know we have more to do in Year 9 to ensure students see the relevance of NAPLAN and are better engaged.” Download the Media Release (225 KB)

Victoria Continues To Lead Nation In NAPLAN

Victorian students continue to outperform other states and lead the nation in education with today’s NAPLAN results confirming the Andrews Labor Government’s Education State reforms are producing real results. Victoria’s primary schools achieved the best results in the country in seven out of 10 measures, up from 2018 when we led on four of the 10 measures. Primary schools also improved on their own excellent results from 2018 on six out of 10 measures, including numeracy where we achieved higher average scores and levels of excellence than all other states and territories. Nearly 45 per cent of Year 3 and 33 per cent of Year 5 students now achieve results in the top two bands, the best in the country. This is an improvement on last year’s figures of 44 per cent and 31 per cent respectively. In reading, nearly 60 per cent of Year 3 and more than 40 per cent of Year 5 students were in the top two bands – more than in any other jurisdiction in Year 3 and ahead of all other jurisdictions except the ACT in Year 5. Importantly, the results show we are successfully addressing disadvantage by continuing to lift more primary students out of the bottom three bands in numeracy. Victoria’s secondary results also showed improvements in key areas. In the critical domains of reading, writing and numeracy, our Year 7 students are the best in the country – excluding the ACT – and have improved since last year. We saw a significant increase in the number of Year 7 students achieving high levels of excellence. In numeracy, 36 per cent of Year 7 students achieved results in the top two bands compared to 31 per cent in 2018, while in reading 30.4 per cent of Year 7 students achieved results in the top two bands compared to 28.5 per cent in 2018. These results are clear evidence that the Education State reforms are working. While these results are encouraging, we know there is more we need to do to lift Year 9 performance. In results that were similar across the country, Year 9 students did not improve on last year’s results in several domains. That is why the Labor Government will appoint a special principal advisory committee to immediately investigate options to improve the relevance of NAPLAN for Year 9 students. This will include exploring ideas such as the introduction of a proficiency certificate and changing the year level the test is conducted to ensure the test is relevant to Year 9 students. The Labor Government is already taking action to target improvement in Year 9 by investing $183 million for intensive literacy and numeracy teaching support to secondary students. This initiative started rolling out this year. Quotes attributable to Minister for Education James Merlino “Victorian students have again achieved excellent results in the 2019 NAPLAN tests, with our primary schools continuing to forge ahead and extend the gap between us and other states.” “We are making significant improvements across Years 3, 5 and 7, but we know we have more to do in Year 9 to ensure students see the relevance of NAPLAN and are better engaged.” Download the Media Release (225 KB)

Victoria Continues To Lead Nation In NAPLAN

Victorian students continue to outperform other states and lead the nation in education with today’s NAPLAN results confirming the Andrews Labor Government’s Education State reforms are producing real results. Victoria’s primary schools achieved the best results in the country in seven out of 10 measures, up from 2018 when we led on four of the 10 measures. Primary schools also improved on their own excellent results from 2018 on six out of 10 measures, including numeracy where we achieved higher average scores and levels of excellence than all other states and territories. Nearly 45 per cent of Year 3 and 33 per cent of Year 5 students now achieve results in the top two bands, the best in the country. This is an improvement on last year’s figures of 44 per cent and 31 per cent respectively. In reading, nearly 60 per cent of Year 3 and more than 40 per cent of Year 5 students were in the top two bands – more than in any other jurisdiction in Year 3 and ahead of all other jurisdictions except the ACT in Year 5. Importantly, the results show we are successfully addressing disadvantage by continuing to lift more primary students out of the bottom three bands in numeracy. Victoria’s secondary results also showed improvements in key areas. In the critical domains of reading, writing and numeracy, our Year 7 students are the best in the country – excluding the ACT – and have improved since last year. We saw a significant increase in the number of Year 7 students achieving high levels of excellence. In numeracy, 36 per cent of Year 7 students achieved results in the top two bands compared to 31 per cent in 2018, while in reading 30.4 per cent of Year 7 students achieved results in the top two bands compared to 28.5 per cent in 2018. These results are clear evidence that the Education State reforms are working. While these results are encouraging, we know there is more we need to do to lift Year 9 performance. In results that were similar across the country, Year 9 students did not improve on last year’s results in several domains. That is why the Labor Government will appoint a special principal advisory committee to immediately investigate options to improve the relevance of NAPLAN for Year 9 students. This will include exploring ideas such as the introduction of a proficiency certificate and changing the year level the test is conducted to ensure the test is relevant to Year 9 students. The Labor Government is already taking action to target improvement in Year 9 by investing $183 million for intensive literacy and numeracy teaching support to secondary students. This initiative started rolling out this year. Quotes attributable to Minister for Education James Merlino “Victorian students have again achieved excellent results in the 2019 NAPLAN tests, with our primary schools continuing to forge ahead and extend the gap between us and other states.” “We are making significant improvements across Years 3, 5 and 7, but we know we have more to do in Year 9 to ensure students see the relevance of NAPLAN and are better engaged.” Download the Media Release (225 KB)

Victoria Continues To Lead Nation In NAPLAN

Victorian students continue to outperform other states and lead the nation in education with today’s NAPLAN results confirming the Andrews Labor Government’s Education State reforms are producing real results. Victoria’s primary schools achieved the best results in the country in seven out of 10 measures, up from 2018 when we led on four of the 10 measures. Primary schools also improved on their own excellent results from 2018 on six out of 10 measures, including numeracy where we achieved higher average scores and levels of excellence than all other states and territories. Nearly 45 per cent of Year 3 and 33 per cent of Year 5 students now achieve results in the top two bands, the best in the country. This is an improvement on last year’s figures of 44 per cent and 31 per cent respectively. In reading, nearly 60 per cent of Year 3 and more than 40 per cent of Year 5 students were in the top two bands – more than in any other jurisdiction in Year 3 and ahead of all other jurisdictions except the ACT in Year 5. Importantly, the results show we are successfully addressing disadvantage by continuing to lift more primary students out of the bottom three bands in numeracy. Victoria’s secondary results also showed improvements in key areas. In the critical domains of reading, writing and numeracy, our Year 7 students are the best in the country – excluding the ACT – and have improved since last year. We saw a significant increase in the number of Year 7 students achieving high levels of excellence. In numeracy, 36 per cent of Year 7 students achieved results in the top two bands compared to 31 per cent in 2018, while in reading 30.4 per cent of Year 7 students achieved results in the top two bands compared to 28.5 per cent in 2018. These results are clear evidence that the Education State reforms are working. While these results are encouraging, we know there is more we need to do to lift Year 9 performance. In results that were similar across the country, Year 9 students did not improve on last year’s results in several domains. That is why the Labor Government will appoint a special principal advisory committee to immediately investigate options to improve the relevance of NAPLAN for Year 9 students. This will include exploring ideas such as the introduction of a proficiency certificate and changing the year level the test is conducted to ensure the test is relevant to Year 9 students. The Labor Government is already taking action to target improvement in Year 9 by investing $183 million for intensive literacy and numeracy teaching support to secondary students. This initiative started rolling out this year. Quotes attributable to Minister for Education James Merlino “Victorian students have again achieved excellent results in the 2019 NAPLAN tests, with our primary schools continuing to forge ahead and extend the gap between us and other states.” “We are making significant improvements across Years 3, 5 and 7, but we know we have more to do in Year 9 to ensure students see the relevance of NAPLAN and are better engaged.” Download the Media Release (225 KB)

New Schools A Step Closer In State School Building Boom

Architects have been appointed to design another eight new schools as the Andrews Labor Government gets on with delivering 100 new schools by 2026. Victoria is growing faster than any other state with our schools needing to accommodate 115,000 additional students over the next five years.  The new schools are a key part of meeting this growth and ensuring every single child has access to a great local school. The architecture firms will design eight of the 13 schools set to open in 2022. Minister for Education James Merlino announced Thomson Adsett, in partnership with Law Architects had been appointed to design: Bridge Road (Melton) Primary School Gisborne South Primary School Grasslands Primary School Kalkallo Common Primary School Wollert East Primary School (including a Supported Inclusion Hub) Mr Merlino also announced McBride Charles Ryan, in partnership with Kerstin Thompson Architects had been appointed to design Clyde North Primary School, Clyde North Secondary College (including a Supported Inclusion Hub) and Greenvale Secondary College The architects will now begin their work on designing state-of-the-art schools, giving local students access to the facilities they need to thrive and encouraging them to actively engage with their education. Architecture firms for four of the other schools and campuses set to open in 2022 have already been announced. They include Fishermans Bend Secondary School, McKinnon Secondary College, Fitzroy Gasworks and Endeavour Hills Specialist School. An announcement on Bass Coast Junior Secondary College is expected to be finalised soon. The is part of the Labor Government’s $5.6 billion investment to deliver more than 1,400 school upgrades, supporting over 7500 construction jobs for Victorians. Quotes attributable to Minister for Education James Merlino “Victoria’s population is booming – that’s why we’re building 100 new schools and upgrading many more across the state to meet the needs of our growing communities.” “We are ensuring that no matter where you live, every family and every child has a great local school.” Download the Media Release (224 KB)

New Schools A Step Closer In State School Building Boom

Architects have been appointed to design another eight new schools as the Andrews Labor Government gets on with delivering 100 new schools by 2026. Victoria is growing faster than any other state with our schools needing to accommodate 115,000 additional students over the next five years.  The new schools are a key part of meeting this growth and ensuring every single child has access to a great local school. The architecture firms will design eight of the 13 schools set to open in 2022. Minister for Education James Merlino announced Thomson Adsett, in partnership with Law Architects had been appointed to design: Bridge Road (Melton) Primary School Gisborne South Primary School Grasslands Primary School Kalkallo Common Primary School Wollert East Primary School (including a Supported Inclusion Hub) Mr Merlino also announced McBride Charles Ryan, in partnership with Kerstin Thompson Architects had been appointed to design Clyde North Primary School, Clyde North Secondary College (including a Supported Inclusion Hub) and Greenvale Secondary College The architects will now begin their work on designing state-of-the-art schools, giving local students access to the facilities they need to thrive and encouraging them to actively engage with their education. Architecture firms for four of the other schools and campuses set to open in 2022 have already been announced. They include Fishermans Bend Secondary School, McKinnon Secondary College, Fitzroy Gasworks and Endeavour Hills Specialist School. An announcement on Bass Coast Junior Secondary College is expected to be finalised soon. The is part of the Labor Government’s $5.6 billion investment to deliver more than 1,400 school upgrades, supporting over 7500 construction jobs for Victorians. Quotes attributable to Minister for Education James Merlino “Victoria’s population is booming – that’s why we’re building 100 new schools and upgrading many more across the state to meet the needs of our growing communities.” “We are ensuring that no matter where you live, every family and every child has a great local school.” Download the Media Release (224 KB)

Names For New Schools Opening In 2020 Revealed

The names of the new schools the Andrews Labor Government is building and opening in 2020 have now been chosen. Minister for Education James Merlino today unveiled the official names for 10 new schools, following consultation with local communities. The new school names will replace their interim names, which they have been known by. They include: Baanip Primary School (interim name Armstrong Creek West Primary School) Botanic Ridge Primary School (interim name Botanic Ridge Primary School) Casey Fields Primary School (interim name Casey Fields (Five Ways) Primary School Davis Creek Primary School (interim name Davis Creek Primary School) Elevation Secondary College (interim name Craigieburn South Secondary School) Grayling Primary School (interim name Clyde North East Primary School) Homestead Senior Secondary College (interim name Point Cook South Senior Secondary School) Keysborough Gardens Primary School (interim name Keysborough South Primary School) Lucas Primary School (interim name Lucas Primary School) Riverwalk Primary School (interim name Wyndham South (Riverwalk) Primary School) A School Advisory Group for each school provided input into the naming process and suggestions for possible names based on factors including public interest, relevance to the local area, and the consideration of local indigenous languages. The Labor Government sought the community’s feedback on the proposed names and suggestions on alternative names as an opportunity to shape the identity of new schools. The new schools are currently under construction and set to open at the beginning of the 2020 school year in Ballarat, Casey, Greater Dandenong, Greater Geelong, Hume, Mitchell and Wyndham. A new school campus for Beveridge Primary School is also under construction and will open next year. These schools are part of the school building boom that will see 100 new government schools open by 2026. The Labor Government has invested $5.6 billion to deliver more than 1,400 school upgrades, supporting over 7,500 construction jobs for Victorians. Quotes attributable to Minister for Education James Merlino “Right across the state we’re building new schools to make sure that no matter where they live, every child has the chance to get a great education.” “This is an exciting step for Victorian school communities and marks a milestone in establishing an identity for their new school.” Download the Media Release (226 KB)

Names For New Schools Opening In 2020 Revealed

The names of the new schools the Andrews Labor Government is building and opening in 2020 have now been chosen. Minister for Education James Merlino today unveiled the official names for 10 new schools, following consultation with local communities. The new school names will replace their interim names, which they have been known by. They include: Baanip Primary School (interim name Armstrong Creek West Primary School) Botanic Ridge Primary School (interim name Botanic Ridge Primary School) Casey Fields Primary School (interim name Casey Fields (Five Ways) Primary School Davis Creek Primary School (interim name Davis Creek Primary School) Elevation Secondary College (interim name Craigieburn South Secondary School) Grayling Primary School (interim name Clyde North East Primary School) Homestead Senior Secondary College (interim name Point Cook South Senior Secondary School) Keysborough Gardens Primary School (interim name Keysborough South Primary School) Lucas Primary School (interim name Lucas Primary School) Riverwalk Primary School (interim name Wyndham South (Riverwalk) Primary School) A School Advisory Group for each school provided input into the naming process and suggestions for possible names based on factors including public interest, relevance to the local area, and the consideration of local indigenous languages. The Labor Government sought the community’s feedback on the proposed names and suggestions on alternative names as an opportunity to shape the identity of new schools. The new schools are currently under construction and set to open at the beginning of the 2020 school year in Ballarat, Casey, Greater Dandenong, Greater Geelong, Hume, Mitchell and Wyndham. A new school campus for Beveridge Primary School is also under construction and will open next year. These schools are part of the school building boom that will see 100 new government schools open by 2026. The Labor Government has invested $5.6 billion to deliver more than 1,400 school upgrades, supporting over 7,500 construction jobs for Victorians. Quotes attributable to Minister for Education James Merlino “Right across the state we’re building new schools to make sure that no matter where they live, every child has the chance to get a great education.” “This is an exciting step for Victorian school communities and marks a milestone in establishing an identity for their new school.” Download the Media Release (226 KB)

Secure Storage For Schools To Roll Out Mobile Phone Ban

The Andrews Labor Government is investing $12.4 million to deliver the resources schools need to securely store student mobile phones, ahead of the state-wide school ban starting next year. Minister for Education James Merlino today announced the funding at Auburn High School with Member for Hawthorn John Kennedy. The funding will ensure schools have the support they need as they implement the policy, which will require all Victorian state primary and secondary school students to switch off and securely store phones during school hours. Each school has different needs and facilities. Schools will be able to apply for funding for secure storage resources that work best for their school. In secondary schools, mobile phones are most likely to be kept in secure lockers, or a secure box in the home room. Schools will be able to apply for funding to purchase or upgrade lockers or buy new padlocks for existing lockers. For schools that don’t have lockers or sufficient space, the Department of Education and Training is exploring other suitable options, including lockable pouches. Similar technology is already used interstate or overseas to store phones securely. Fewer children bring mobile phones to primary school, so schools can apply to purchase secure storage cupboards. The Labor Government announced in June this year that from Term 1, 2020 all students at Victorian state primary and secondary schools will be required to turn off their mobile phones and store during the school day. This will help reduce distraction and bullying, while improving social interactions and learning outcomes for students. The only exceptions to the policy will be where students use phones to monitor health conditions or where teachers instruct students to bring their phone for a specific classroom activity. When emergencies occur, parents or guardians can reach their child by calling the school. In addition to the $12.4 million funding, from the start of Term 4 school communities will also have access to detailed advice and resources as they prepare to introduce the mobile phone policy next year. Quotes attributable to Minister for Education James Merlino “We are making sure each school has the secure storage facilities that suit their needs ahead of the mobile phone ban starting in Term 1 next year.” “Banning mobile phones during school hours will not only mean students focus more on learning, it will also help kids interact more in the school yard and reduce cyber bullying.” Quote attributable to Member for Hawthorn John Kennedy “This is about getting all Victorian state schools ready to put away their phones and put their education first.” Download the Media Release (212 KB)

Secure Storage For Schools To Roll Out Mobile Phone Ban

The Andrews Labor Government is investing $12.4 million to deliver the resources schools need to securely store student mobile phones, ahead of the state-wide school ban starting next year. Minister for Education James Merlino today announced the funding at Auburn High School with Member for Hawthorn John Kennedy. The funding will ensure schools have the support they need as they implement the policy, which will require all Victorian state primary and secondary school students to switch off and securely store phones during school hours. Each school has different needs and facilities. Schools will be able to apply for funding for secure storage resources that work best for their school. In secondary schools, mobile phones are most likely to be kept in secure lockers, or a secure box in the home room. Schools will be able to apply for funding to purchase or upgrade lockers or buy new padlocks for existing lockers. For schools that don’t have lockers or sufficient space, the Department of Education and Training is exploring other suitable options, including lockable pouches. Similar technology is already used interstate or overseas to store phones securely. Fewer children bring mobile phones to primary school, so schools can apply to purchase secure storage cupboards. The Labor Government announced in June this year that from Term 1, 2020 all students at Victorian state primary and secondary schools will be required to turn off their mobile phones and store during the school day. This will help reduce distraction and bullying, while improving social interactions and learning outcomes for students. The only exceptions to the policy will be where students use phones to monitor health conditions or where teachers instruct students to bring their phone for a specific classroom activity. When emergencies occur, parents or guardians can reach their child by calling the school. In addition to the $12.4 million funding, from the start of Term 4 school communities will also have access to detailed advice and resources as they prepare to introduce the mobile phone policy next year. Quotes attributable to Minister for Education James Merlino “We are making sure each school has the secure storage facilities that suit their needs ahead of the mobile phone ban starting in Term 1 next year.” “Banning mobile phones during school hours will not only mean students focus more on learning, it will also help kids interact more in the school yard and reduce cyber bullying.” Quote attributable to Member for Hawthorn John Kennedy “This is about getting all Victorian state schools ready to put away their phones and put their education first.” Download the Media Release (212 KB)

MONBULK COMMUNITIES BENEFIT FROM $50 MILLION

Yarra Ranges Council can now apply for funding to fast-track community facility projects, with the opening of the Victorian Government’s 2019-20 Growing Suburbs Fund (GSF). Minister for Local Government Adem Somyurek today announced the opening of the latest funding round, with a further $50 million in grants available for projects that improve the amenity, liveability and resilience in the outer suburbs. The Andrews Labor Government is investing $250 million through the GSF to support critical community infrastructure in Melbourne’s 10 interface councils, which face future challenges such as population growth and changing demographics. State Member for Monbulk, James Merlino MP has encouraged Yarra Ranges Council to apply for grants to build or improve family and community centres, town centres, parks, reserves and playgrounds. Since its establishment in 2015, the GSF has supported 161 projects, representing a total infrastructure investment of $520 million and creating over 5000 jobs in Melbourne's diverse and fast-growing urban fringe. The GSF has already contributed to vital projects in the Yarra Ranges including: $1.25 Million for the Burrinja Cultural Centre Redevelopment $1 Million for the Monbulk Community and Sports Pavilion $1 Million for the Upwey Tecoma Community Recreational and Sporting Hub $500,000 for the Belgrave South Community Sports Pavilion $723,000  for the Belgrave Community Hub $2 Million for The Ridgewalk This year the GSF guidelines have been updated to ensure gender equality is a factor in the selection process, to support projects which build on the Victorian Government’s commitment for gender diversity across all sectors. More information on how to apply visit: https://www.localgovernment.vic.gov.au/grants/growing-suburbs-fund. Quotes attributable to Minister for Local Government Adem Somyurek  “The Growing Suburbs Fund brings forward vital projects that will improve the day-to-day lives of outer suburban communities which are in a rapid state of growth and change.”  “We’re getting on with helping councils deliver better facilities for their communities, and I’m excited to see what innovative projects this latest round of grants can help deliver.”  Quotes attributable to Member for Monbulk, James Merlino “It’s great to see the Victorian Government work with the Yarra Ranges Council to help them grow the community and respond and thrive in the face of future challenges.” “The population in some of Melbourne’s outer suburbs is expanding at unprecedented rates, and the Growing Suburbs Fund ensures current and future generations will have access to the modern facilities they need.”  

MONBULK COMMUNITIES BENEFIT FROM $50 MILLION

Yarra Ranges Council can now apply for funding to fast-track community facility projects, with the opening of the Victorian Government’s 2019-20 Growing Suburbs Fund (GSF). Minister for Local Government Adem Somyurek today announced the opening of the latest funding round, with a further $50 million in grants available for projects that improve the amenity, liveability and resilience in the outer suburbs. The Andrews Labor Government is investing $250 million through the GSF to support critical community infrastructure in Melbourne’s 10 interface councils, which face future challenges such as population growth and changing demographics. State Member for Monbulk, James Merlino MP has encouraged Yarra Ranges Council to apply for grants to build or improve family and community centres, town centres, parks, reserves and playgrounds. Since its establishment in 2015, the GSF has supported 161 projects, representing a total infrastructure investment of $520 million and creating over 5000 jobs in Melbourne's diverse and fast-growing urban fringe. The GSF has already contributed to vital projects in the Yarra Ranges including: $1.25 Million for the Burrinja Cultural Centre Redevelopment $1 Million for the Monbulk Community and Sports Pavilion $1 Million for the Upwey Tecoma Community Recreational and Sporting Hub $500,000 for the Belgrave South Community Sports Pavilion $723,000  for the Belgrave Community Hub $2 Million for The Ridgewalk This year the GSF guidelines have been updated to ensure gender equality is a factor in the selection process, to support projects which build on the Victorian Government’s commitment for gender diversity across all sectors. More information on how to apply visit: https://www.localgovernment.vic.gov.au/grants/growing-suburbs-fund. Quotes attributable to Minister for Local Government Adem Somyurek  “The Growing Suburbs Fund brings forward vital projects that will improve the day-to-day lives of outer suburban communities which are in a rapid state of growth and change.”  “We’re getting on with helping councils deliver better facilities for their communities, and I’m excited to see what innovative projects this latest round of grants can help deliver.”  Quotes attributable to Member for Monbulk, James Merlino “It’s great to see the Victorian Government work with the Yarra Ranges Council to help them grow the community and respond and thrive in the face of future challenges.” “The population in some of Melbourne’s outer suburbs is expanding at unprecedented rates, and the Growing Suburbs Fund ensures current and future generations will have access to the modern facilities they need.”  

PAVILION SET TO BE THE HEART OF MONBULK SPORTING COMMUNITY

Local sports clubs will now have access to a new pavilion, complete with community meeting areas in Monbulk. Deputy Premier James Merlino today joined community members to officially open the newly completed Monbulk Community Sporting Pavilion. The $3.8 million project received $1 million from the Andrews Labor Government’s Growing Suburbs Fund and $600,000 from the Community Sports Infrastructure Fund. The Monbulk Community and Sports Pavilion will assist more girls and women to participate in football and sports, welcoming all ages, abilities and genders. The facility includes: A community gathering space change room facilities showers and amenities umpire change facilities a gymnasium first aid/training room kitchen and canteen facilities storage rooms a covered spectator viewing area. Minister Merlino congratulated the Yarra Ranges Council and the community for raising substantial funding, which contributed towards the $3.8 million project. The Growing Suburbs Fund supports Melbourne’s interface Councils respond to the pressures of growth on community facilities by bringing forward the delivery of projects that improve amenity, liveability and resilience in the outer suburbs. More information on the Growing Suburbs Fund is available at: https://www.localgovernment.vic.gov.au/grants/growing-suburbs-fund. Quotes attributable to Deputy Premier James Merlino “I want to acknowledge the community who have contributed so much to see the Monbulk Recreation Reserve Upgrade completed.” “In particular I want to acknowledge Paul Utting whose continued leadership has seen this project through to the end.” Quotes attributed to Adem Somyurek, Minister for Local Government “The Andrews Labor Government’s Growing Suburbs Fund provides crucial community facilities just like the Monbulk Community Sporting Pavilion”. Quotes attributed to Martin Pakula, Minister for Tourism, Sport and Major Events “We want all Victorians to have access to high quality facilities regardless of where they live or their gender.” “This is about giving back to the community – delivering more facilities for our clubs in Monbulk so they can encourage more locals to get involved in grassroots sport."   

PAVILION SET TO BE THE HEART OF MONBULK SPORTING COMMUNITY

Local sports clubs will now have access to a new pavilion, complete with community meeting areas in Monbulk. Deputy Premier James Merlino today joined community members to officially open the newly completed Monbulk Community Sporting Pavilion. The $3.8 million project received $1 million from the Andrews Labor Government’s Growing Suburbs Fund and $600,000 from the Community Sports Infrastructure Fund. The Monbulk Community and Sports Pavilion will assist more girls and women to participate in football and sports, welcoming all ages, abilities and genders. The facility includes: A community gathering space change room facilities showers and amenities umpire change facilities a gymnasium first aid/training room kitchen and canteen facilities storage rooms a covered spectator viewing area. Minister Merlino congratulated the Yarra Ranges Council and the community for raising substantial funding, which contributed towards the $3.8 million project. The Growing Suburbs Fund supports Melbourne’s interface Councils respond to the pressures of growth on community facilities by bringing forward the delivery of projects that improve amenity, liveability and resilience in the outer suburbs. More information on the Growing Suburbs Fund is available at: https://www.localgovernment.vic.gov.au/grants/growing-suburbs-fund. Quotes attributable to Deputy Premier James Merlino “I want to acknowledge the community who have contributed so much to see the Monbulk Recreation Reserve Upgrade completed.” “In particular I want to acknowledge Paul Utting whose continued leadership has seen this project through to the end.” Quotes attributed to Adem Somyurek, Minister for Local Government “The Andrews Labor Government’s Growing Suburbs Fund provides crucial community facilities just like the Monbulk Community Sporting Pavilion”. Quotes attributed to Martin Pakula, Minister for Tourism, Sport and Major Events “We want all Victorians to have access to high quality facilities regardless of where they live or their gender.” “This is about giving back to the community – delivering more facilities for our clubs in Monbulk so they can encourage more locals to get involved in grassroots sport."