Territory Stories

Debates Day 2 - Wednesday 1 May 1991



Debates Day 2 - Wednesday 1 May 1991

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Parliamentary Record 3


Debates for 6th Assembly 1990 - 1994; ParliamentNT; Parliamentary Record; 6th Assembly 1990 - 1994




Made available by the Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory





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Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory

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Attribution International 4.0 (CC BY 4.0)

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Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory



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DEBATES - Wednesday 1 May 1991 Let us have a look at the situation confronting us. Tiwi Primary School has a capacity of 510 and an enrolment of 178. Rapid Creek Primary School has a capacity of 420 and an enrolment of 176. Karguru Primary School has a capacity of 480 and Tennant Creek Primary School a capacity of 500, yet their combined enrolment is 380. Traeger Park Primary School has a capacity of 510 and an enrolment of 144. If the member for Wanguri does not accept that 170 enrolments in a school that has a capacity of 510 does not utilise that resource properly, what would he say if it were 100 students or 50 students? When would he say that ... Mr Bailey: The department people said they were offering an education program of a quality as good as that available anywhere. Mr DEPUTY SPEAKER: Order! I remind the member for Wanguri that he has had 2 warnings today. If he persists, he will be named. Mr MANZIE: Would he say that 10 students is an appropriate enrolment for the closure of a school? Will he give a figure? Does he believe that there should be no figure and that, as long as there is one student attending a school, it should be kept open? I am disappointed that the member for Wanguri has left the Chamber again. I am sure that he feels that he is representing his constituents in a full and frank way, but I find it very disappointing. They probably will too, when they learn that he has spent more of his time during this debate out of the Chamber than in it. As well as the low enrolment numbers, we should look at the location of the schools. The distance in a straight line from Tiwi Primary School to Wanguri Primary School is 900 m. The direct distance from Tiwi Primary School to Nakara Primary School is 600 m. That puts the problems we are talking about into better perspective. We are talking about large premises which are greatly under-utilised. We are talking about a choice for students to make between a school which is 600 m from the present school and one which is 900 m from the present school. Rapid Creek Primary School is situated 800 m from Nightcliff Primary School and 1005 m from the Millner Primary School. Again, its capacity in relation to its enrolment is very relevant. This is not an easy exercise. It cannot be undertaken without a great deal of stress and trauma. As has been evident from happenings elsewhere in the country, a series of steps have to be taken. The environment which requires such steps has been brought about by ALP policies which have destroyed this c o m t r y economically. They are still destroying it. The process is being carried out by the Minister for Education in a most effective way, with all possible consultation and with great awareness of the emotional distress that this type of change will cause. Mr Deputy Speaker, I wish to move an amendment to the motion. Mr DEPUTY SPEAKER: Order! The honourable minister's time has expired. Mr SETTER: Mr Deputy Speaker, I move that the honourable minister be granted an extension of time. Motion agreed to. 798

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