Page 2296 - Week 08 - Wednesday, 5 June 2013

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MADAM SPEAKER: A supplementary question, Dr Bourke.

DR BOURKE: Minister, why is it important to have a program such as CCCares, and what evidence do you have of the benefits it has already produced?

MS BURCH: Reconnecting with education can often be a difficult prospect for young women who become mothers. One of the most effective ways to minimise the risk of such outcomes is to support young pregnant women and mothers to stay connected to schooling by creating tailored programs such as CCCares, which cater for individual student needs.

CCCares addresses the social exclusion and welfare dependence that is often faced by many pregnant young women and parenting young people, who are often living below the poverty line and have little access to support, services and education.

The majority of students enrolled in the CCCares program face educational challenges not generally encountered by ACT students in the mainstream setting. Particular challenges for CCCares include supporting and catering for an extremely high level of independent living students, educationally disenfranchised students, and culturally and linguistically diverse students, including refugees and students from low socioeconomic backgrounds.

CCCares works to reduce the social isolation often experienced by young parents. It offers specialised support for young mums and young dads who are also students and supports their transition to life after CCCares.

The particular strengths of the program include the combination of “one-stop shop” onsite health and educational specialists. The close collaboration between CCCares and our partner agencies has resulted in significant improvements in student participation, enhanced engagement in active learning outcomes and greater rates of certification. On average, 12 to 15 students a year graduate with an ACT year 12 certificate. That is a dozen or so people each year who are now able to get an education and skills that will change their lives and those of their children.

MADAM SPEAKER: A supplementary question, Ms Porter.

MS PORTER: Minister, when will the facilities be completed and will it match the education directorate’s record on completing school projects on time and on budget?

MS BURCH: I thank Ms Porter for her interest. As I have noted, the Education and Training Directorate has a strong record of on time and on budget delivery of projects—of course, most recently at the new Neville Bonner school and Franklin Early Childhood School, which were not simply delivered on time but were also $28 million under budget.

This was achieved using a lump sum tender process with a specific form of contract, known as a GC21 contract. This is a collaborative and non-adversarial form of construction contract with an emphasis on prompt and effective communication. A

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