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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2007 Week 13 Hansard (5 December) . . Page.. 3998..


MR PRATT: You are like a galah over there, Mr Barr. You are chatting away, to yourself perhaps. But, Mr Barr, isn't that within two kilometres of the Wanniassa P-10 school? I would have thought it was. The lack of planning in this proposal is so obvious it can be pointed out to me and the minister by the students who are set to lose their school. Poor old Kambah high school; it has got a good little record, that school. By the way, in my estimation of that school's record and its performance, it was also looking after some disadvantaged students who come from that particular part of the ACT, so it was providing a valuable service.

The assessment of whether a school should be shut or not is a lot more complicated than this minister has made it out to be—a mathematical exercise and that is it. It was this government, by the way, which misled the ACT community that it would never shut schools. So on the back of that we have then got an insensitive minister who has just made these decisions. Of course this is the Kambah high school that Mr Gentleman earlier in this debate today did not even know existed in Brindabella. He did not even know. What sort of a member is this?

The government's claim in 2004 that it was categorically not going to close down schools has been proven to be a mislead. The drift has never been answered in this debate. The drift continues and so far this minister's closure program has not arrested the drift. What a failure.

MRS DUNNE (Ginninderra) (5.13): I wish to speak on Mr Barr's amendment and to move the amendment to Mr Barr's amendment circulated in my name. I move:

Add:

"(3) notes that the Stanhope Government misled the community about its school closure program prior to the 2004 election.".

This is an interesting debate today because one of the things that Mr Barr wants to get away from is the issue—the most discomforting issue for him—of how the Stanhope government lied to and misled the community about the notion of school closures before the 2004 election.

MR SPEAKER: I do not think the use of the word "lie"is very productive, Mrs Dunne. I have asked you to withdraw it before.

MRS DUNNE: I am sorry, Mr Speaker, I did not say that the Stanhope government lied in this place; I said it lied to the community.

MR SPEAKER: I know what you said. It is just—

MRS DUNNE: If you insist, Mr Speaker, but I think also there needs to be some consistency in the ruling.

MR SPEAKER: There is consistency. I have asked you before to withdraw. I do not like the use of the word "lie". It is an accusation that people deliberately do things and I just do not think that it adds to the parliamentary comity of this place.


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