| 18.06,19. 06:49 PM |
Granville MP Julia Finn hits out at NSW Government over lack of funding for new Westmead Public School
Granville MP, Julia Finn (AAP Image / Angelo Velardo)
Westmead Public School is currently one of the biggest schools in the state
A new school was promised and made into a major election commitment, but years on, the location for a school at Westmead remains unfunded and "forgotten".
Westmead may be home to the biggest primary school in the state — which is bursting at the seems with more than 1600 students — but that didn't mean landmark funding was committed to constructing a promised new school for the fed-up suburb.
Granville state Labor MP Julia Finn has hit out over a lack of funding for the new school, which was a major election commitment by Liberal Party candidate Tony Issa, who claimed he had “delivered a new school for Westmead” during the March State Election.
Ms Finn hit out at the NSW Government following the budget release by NSW Treasurer Dominic Perrottet on Tuesday, telling the Parramatta Advertiser “The Liberals’ 2019-2020 budget still has no funding, no location and no construction time frame for a new primary school for Westmead.”
“During the election campaign, the Liberal candidate repeatedly claimed ‘I’ve delivered a new school for Westmead’,” she said.
“Meanwhile from this year, new students living north of the railway line in Westmead are excluded from the school. “Their local school is now the O’Connell Street school in Parramatta.”
Ms Finn said Westmead school kids “face many more years being squashed in like sardines until the Government decides to get serious and deliver what they promised”.
“I call on the Berejiklian Government to put their money where their mouth is and build a new school for Westmead,” she said.
However, a spokeswoman for NSW Education Minister Sarah Mitchell refuted claims Westmead had been forgotten in the budget.
“The 2019/20 budget includes a record breaking $6.7 billion to deliver 190 new and upgraded schools across the state,” the spokeswoman said.
“Our investment in new and upgraded schools in NSW is unprecedented. All 190 schools are fully funded, including the new primary school for Westmead.”
The spokeswoman said some projects have funding set out in the budget papers.
“For others, we have allocated $30 million to keep progressing the early stages of planning, or they are currently going through commercially confidential tender processes,” she said. “The new primary school for Westmead is currently in the early planning stages and work is progressing.”
The spokeswoman failed to identify the amount of funding committed to planning for the new school.