I thank all the students, families and staff who were able to complete our survey in regards to the school facilities. I have been so pleased to see how much interest the VSBA has taken in our particular school setting, demonstrating an understanding of the importance of each school’s community, culture and setting.
I understand some families did not engage with the survey, feeling that this process is not necessary when we have a developed master plan. Whilst I do understand the sentiment of not fixing something that isn’t broken, the latest consultation process is slightly different and meets the various needs of the VSBA. The first phase of the planning process, which we are currently in the middle of, is about our school vision and needs. Phase 2 then starts to take into consideration the Department’s priorities, the (potentially) hidden issues with this beautiful old building (for example, electrical wiring) and the space requirements for a school with 430 students.
I feel it is important to take a moment to state that we will not get our entire masterplan built with $6.23 million. The Strategic Infrastructure Committee (SIC) put an estimated cost of all improvements to be between $15-20 million, so under the best circumstances our $6.23 will cover just one-third of this. It is also important to state that the masterplan SIC developed was predominantly a costing, visioning and communication/campaign exercise; despite the political funding announcement being for our STELA building, the actual outcome of the Capital Works may differ, as determined by this process.
With this being said, I want to extend another big thank you to all the families engaged in the campaign and in the development of our Strategic Infrastructure Needs statement - this has been an invaluable resource in the early stages of planning.