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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2014 Week 5 Hansard (13 May) . . Page.. 1415..


headquarters. I met with president David Rymer, vice-president Pat and other members. I had a great time checking out all the stalls that offered a wide range of items, such as cakes, jams, pre-loved clothes, toys, games and craftwork. But it was the bookstall that really held my attention and where I spent some considerable money. There was a great selection of biographies and general fiction, all of which added up to me getting into a lot of trouble when I got home for buying yet more books. I can certainly recommend it to any other colleagues here who are interested in some old and some very rare books, in a way. Make sure you go to next year's.

It was also a good opportunity to catch up with some old friends I have not seen for years. I noted that some other Assembly colleagues took the opportunity to come and support the fete—Sue White from my office and Chris May from the Assembly secretariat. My congratulations to all the organisers of the Canberra Seniors autumn fete. I realise it takes an enormous amount of effort each year, but judging by the great turnout it was obviously well worth it. Congratulations again on all of your organisation.

John Paul College

MR COE (Ginninderra) (4.40): I rise this afternoon to speak about John Paul College in Gungahlin. The college is a new Catholic co-educational secondary school in Gungahlin. The school was opened last year, taking in year 7 students, and moved to a new campus in Nicholls at the start of the 2014 school year. The school will become a fully functioning years 7 to 12 school in 2018 when the first crop of year 7 students reach year 12 and will, at capacity, be able to hold approximately 1,200 students.

John Paul College complements three Catholic primary schools in Gungahlin—Good Shepherd in Amaroo, Holy Spirit in Nicholls and Mother Teresa in Harrison, to provide a kindergarten to year 12 Catholic educational pathway for students in Gungahlin. The school is also at the forefront of modern school design and teaching, providing a fun and enjoyable campus and curriculum for its students.

It is a shame, then, that the school faced so many obstacles in order to open its doors. In 2010 the school was granted land in Throsby to build their new campus. Environmental issues, namely the golden sun moth and the superb parrot, however, prevented the college from being built. This forced the school to once again negotiate with the ACT government for land to hold their campus.

While land would eventually be found in Nicholls, the change of location severely delayed the building of the school's campus. This placed a lot of stress on the school's administration, which had originally planned to open the school in 2013. Fortunately, temporary accommodation was able to be found at Mother Teresa primary school in Harrison. While the temporary accommodation was less than ideal, it did allow the school to have its first intake of students and to stick to the original timetable. Staff and students moved into their Nicholls campus in January this year after it was completed.

It was through this very difficult process that the persistence and patience of all involved in this school shone through. The difficulties that they have faced together


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