School caught in politic crossfire

Brad Battin speaking with students from Emerald Secondary College. Picture - Brad Battin.

A school in Emerald has failed to receive any funding in the State Budget, a decision which has angered Liberal State Member for Gembrook Brad Battin.

Emerald Secondary College missed out on the recreation of a STEM centre after the Coalition’s $5.2 million commitment wasn’t matched by Labor.

The money would have gone towards rebuilding the school’s run down maths and science rooms into a centre which would integrate the areas of science, technology, engineering and maths.

“It’s disappointing the Labor Government would rather play politics than provide vital funding to enhance the potential of Emerald Secondary College students,” Mr Battin said.

He claims that despite the many pleas of students, parents and staff, the Andrews Labor Government continue to find the school “unworthy of the vital funding”.

“It should not matter where you live; all students should have access to safe and comfortable learning environments,” he said.

“Labor must stop playing politics and stop ignoring the students and teachers of Emerald Secondary College.”

Last year, Mr Battin pledged to rebuild and create a state of the art STEM Centre at the school, if a Liberal Government was elected.

But Member for Eastern Victoria Harriet Shing said when the Liberals had the change, they “left schools to rot” across the electorate.

“Brad Battin should be ashamed of himself for using this school and community as a political football,” Ms Shing said.

“We are delivering the biggest school building boom in our state’s history, however we need to responsibly manage the needs of all of our schools.

“Emerald Secondary College will be considered as a part of future budgets.”

Emerald Secondary College has been contacted for comment.