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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2005 Week 12 Hansard (19 October) . . Page.. 3855..


MS GALLAGHER (continuing):

me. Departmental staff were at that meeting and they had some discussions with those parents. That is where my information is coming from that the issue has been addressed. I would be surprised if it is still a concern for parents but, if it is, I am more than happy to look at it. But my understanding, from the information given to me, is that this has been addressed to the satisfaction of all parties.

MRS DUNNE: That is not my advice, Mr Speaker, but I thank the minister for her answer and I have a supplementary question. Will she give an assurance that no student will have to fight on an individual basis to have their work assessed; that no student will automatically be given status?

MS GALLAGHER: Again, I do not know about Mrs Dunne's information or how recent the concerns that she has received in her office are. As of last week, when I met with the department and the parents—

Mrs Dunne: After they met with you.

MS GALLAGHER: If it was after they met with me, they have heard a different answer from the department than the one I heard. My understanding is that this was raised in an individual case and it has been addressed across the student population. That is my recall of the advice from the department: that it was a good suggestion from parents. I have no reason to believe that it is not being addressed for the student population. It has not been raised with my office. Apart from one situation in a meeting last week, it has not come to my office as a concern that parents have. The advice from the department at the time was that the concerns that a parent had for an individual student were addressed and were addressed across the population.

Ginninderra school—public consultation

MRS BURKE: My question is to the minister for education, Ms Gallagher. The community engagement strategy reveals that the department is planning a public launch and open day for the new megaschool in September 2008, a month before the next election. Minister, since you have already decided to go ahead with the megaschool as an election gimmick, why are you wasting everyone's time and insulting the people of west Belconnen with this charade of a public consultation process?

MS GALLAGHER: I think that this is a bit of retaliation with Mrs Burke coming into Mrs Dunne's portfolio. Previously, Mrs Dunne was going into everyone else's portfolio. There is a bit of a turf war going on there with the new whip and the old whip and it is good to see. We are not going to know who is the shadow spokesperson on anything, because they are all going to be amongst each other's portfolios. It is good to see, Mrs Burke. Go and intrude into the areas of other people as much as you like because we enjoy it over here.

Members interjecting

MR SPEAKER: Order, members! Let the minister response, please.

MS GALLAGHER: All I will say in response to that question, which was ridiculous and not worthy of an answer, is that the government is currently engaged in genuine


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