School’s $12 million plea

State budget bid to build centre of excellence for our special children
WEB WDSS Paul Scragg 09 pe c5 20180315
CRAMPED: This shot from above Wangaratta District Specialist School highlights the lack of space, particularly in the playground, with additional portables placed over the basketball court in recent years, and a small grassed area expected to accommodate 162 students. PHOTO: Paul Scragg

Wangaratta District Specialist School is seeking $10 to 12 million in the upcoming State Government budget to develop a purpose-built centre of excellence.

As the school continues to outgrow its land-locked Appin Street campus, which exhausted its allocation of portable buildings at the start of 2017, WDSS has clarified its need for a new building rather than planning support.

School council president Ruth Crawford said WDSS would seek funding for a purpose-built school to serve the community’s needs for the next five to 10 years, with scope to expand in future.

And community supporters, as well as four local councils, have backed the bid.

To cater for spiralling enrolments, which have risen from 64 in 2007 to 162 in 2018, recent years have seen portables placed on the school’s basketball court, green space, staff car park, bus shelter and bike shed.

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