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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2018 Week 06 Hansard (Wednesday, 6 June 2018) . . Page.. 2116 ..


this fund has provided substantial improvements to schools in Murrumbidgee, like modernised heating and cooling systems at Melrose High School; funding upgrades to the front office and school administration area at Malkara school; and refurbished learning and teaching areas at the Woden School, among others. I look forward to seeing other schools in my electorate and across the ACT getting funding under this infrastructure fund in the budget.

In addition, our government will also be funding $17.96 million for the roof replacement program. And just the other week I was really pleased to visit Mount Stromlo High School in Weston Creek, Waramanga, to view their recent roof upgrades, which are making a real difference to the temperature and comfort of learning environments in that school. There has been some very interesting qualitative and quantitative data before and after the improvements, and it is proving to make a real difference already.

Our infrastructure investment demonstrates our values as a government, and in every budget we are continuing our commitment to deliver more than the Liberals committed at the last election in school infrastructure.

We are also continuing to provide the support that students need to support their wellbeing in our schools. Last year’s budget saw $2.36 million for five additional school psychologists, and just yesterday we announced an additional $7.3 million to meet our commitment of 20 additional school psychologists during this term of government. This will make support for children’s wellbeing more accessible throughout our schooling system—expert secular student support, not the Liberals’ plan for a chaplain at every school gate.

To make our schools more inclusive, our government will also provide additional funding to support students with a disability and complex additional needs. This will make our learning environments fairer and give all children the same learning opportunities and support to learn.

As we are looking after students, we are also looking after our teachers. When teachers get the scaffolding or supports that they need to do their job, teaching is much more effective. Investing in support and resources for teachers to build their expertise and to participate in professional learning provides better outcomes for students. That is why in the budget there will be an investment of $9.2 million provided over four years to improve teacher capability in literacy and numeracy as well as providing mentorship opportunities. There will also be growth in the amount of on the ground support provided at schools, with the investment of 66 additional learning professionals and support staff for our schools.

We need to continue to look towards the future in improving our education system. We are entering the new machine age, and I am pleased that our government is taking the steps to prepare students with the skills of the future. According to the Deloitte millennial survey 2017, 40 per cent of young people thought automation posed a threat to their jobs and 44 per cent believed that there would be less demand for their skills. More than 50 per cent said that they would have to retrain in order to gain new skills. That is why it is so pleasing to see in this budget that we are investing in


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