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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2007 Week 12 Hansard (20 November) . . Page.. 3550..


MS GALLAGHER: Quite simply, because the Canberra Times asked me what could make up the reasons for the categories. That was the question that I was asked by the journalist. In the question from Mrs Burke I was asked to break the information down. I said that would take a long time. I did not see that that would assist anything. If Mrs Burke had asked what possibly could make up the categories of this potential liability, I would have given her the same answer—that is, it could be a range of things. It could be anything from the staff reporting something through RiskMan to a member of the public falling over in the front doors of the hospital. It could be about complaints around treatment; it could be a whole range of things. With respect to breaking them down into categories, I think I remember signing off the answer to the question by saying I was unable to provide that in the time allowed under the standing orders for answering a question on notice.

MR SPEAKER: Do you have a supplementary question, Mrs Burke?

MRS BURKE: Thank you, Mr Speaker. Minister, what is the current status of compensation claims and any associated liabilities that have been lodged with ACT Health?

MS GALLAGHER: I am sure I have either answered that for Mrs Burke or it is in another question on notice I have seen that Mrs Burke has put on the notice paper recently. I will take some further advice on the matter, but I think you have asked me that, it is on the notice paper or I have given you a reason why we can't provide that information as accurately as you have sought. That could be for a range of reasons, because some of the potential liabilities are things that may not even eventuate. Now, in the health system, we have implemented the RiskMan system, which means that every little incident in the hospital is noted on the system and could be forwarded to ACTIA as a potential liability facing the health system. I am not sure we can give you exactly what that figure would be, but I will take some further advice on that.

Schools—early childhood

DR FOSKEY: My question is directed to the minister for education and concerns the impact of the decision to restrict a number of primary schools to students zero to eight years. In the light of information that enrolments at some of these schools are falling—for instance, Isabella Plains started the year with 19 classes, which fell to 15 during 2007, and is reportedly down to nine classes next year, prior to it becoming a zero to eight school in 2009—would the government consider changes to the strategy so that these local schools could remain viable?

MR BARR: I thank Dr Foskey for the question. No, the government has put in place a network of early childhood schools to commence in 2009. We are providing a new education model in the ACT, just as we made changes in the 1970s when year levels were changed. For example, Dickson high school, which was seven to 12, became an 11 to 12 school in the 1970s. Year levels at schools can change in line with a renewed focus in that particular school environment.

It is not unusual for year levels in schools in the ACT education system to change. We have proposed a network of five early childhood schools providing a new set of


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