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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2007 Week 09 Hansard (Wednesday, 26 September 2007) . . Page.. 2737 ..

But notwithstanding people’s enjoyment, during the night and after there is damage reported to property, including damage as a result of illegal activities and vexatious explosions that potentially harm people and animals. I believe it is a reason for considerable concern. I am very pleased that the minister has affirmed that the upcoming review will be thorough and is likely to be tabled in the Assembly in February 2008, or as early as possible. Thank you for that, minister.

Motion agreed to.


Motion (by Mr Barr) proposed:

That the Assembly do now adjourn.

Good Shepherd Catholic primary school

MR SESELJA (Molonglo) (5.55): Today I had the pleasure of attending the official opening of capital works at the Good Shepherd Catholic primary school in Amaroo. Senator Gary Humphries was on hand to officially open the new works. The principal, Graham Pollard, was there. Archbishop Coleridge was there to bless the works and my Assembly colleague, Richard Mulcahy, was also in attendance, as were many parents and friends of the school and, of course, students.

We saw the completed stage 6 at the school, which features general purpose learning areas, information technology areas and more. The Australian government provided funding of $650,000 to assist in the further development of the school and its facilities. I also note that the school has applied for and received funding for the chaplaincy program.

The school opened in 2002 with 84 students and today there are 535 students from kindergarten to year 6, and it is bursting at the seams. I want to congratulate Mr Graham Pollard, the school principal, for his excellent management and leadership. I also congratulate the parents and volunteers in the local community that make the school an important part of the fabric of Amaroo and an important part of the fabric of our community.

Mr Speaker, I had the opportunity while I was there to talk with parents and members of the Catholic Education Office about some of the challenges facing non-government schools in particular. There are concerns over not only the ACT government’s funding but also federal government funding. The SES model, as it applies in the ACT, will soon start to disadvantage new non-government schools in the ACT. They have avoided that because existing schools have had their level of funding maintained, but if they want to open up new schools, particularly in expanding areas like Gungahlin, there is the potential of less federal government funding.

I will certainly be lobbying my federal colleagues to have another look at that because I think it is important that the ACT not be disadvantaged in that way. The ACT government does give, I think, the lowest level or amongst the lowest levels of

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