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Hedland Senior High School a ticking time bomb

The McGowan Government must provide an urgent cash injection for Hedland Senior High School after a scathing report highlighted safety risks for students and staff.

The report, seen by The Nationals WA, concluded it was “inevitable” there would be a “serious” injury to a staff member or student due to a “multitude of risk situations” at the South Hedland campus.

Issues identified in the report included:

  • Deteriorating buildings
  • Hazardous and open drains throughout the school grounds
  • No outside undercover area and lack of shady structures
  • Substandard toilet blocks and changing rooms for staff and students
  • Broken concrete paths and uneven paving

Education spokesperson Peter Rundle toured Hedland Senior High School last month and said he was alarmed at the level of neglect.

“Despite the incredible job done by the school’s hard-working staff and principal, Hedland SHS is in a poor state,” Mr Rundle said.

“I was stunned to see the level of decay throughout the school and that students had very little shade in which to play or eat their lunch despite the blistering Pilbara heat which regularly tops 40C.

“The last major cash injection at Hedland SHS was when The Nationals were in Government. We invested $22.4 million between 2012-2014, including $11.3 million for new classroom and administration blocks.”

Member for Mining and Pastoral Region Jacqui Boydell said Hedland Senior High School required urgent funding to address the issues identified in the report.

“The McGowan Government is spending $68 million on a new inner-city college in Subiaco, yet students and staff in Hedland are forced to contend with a school in disrepair on a daily basis,” Ms Boydell said.

“Perhaps the McGowan Government can redirect some of the billions of dollars it is spending on Metronet and provide adequate facilities for the students of Hedland Senior High School.

“Once again regional WA, despite generating the lion’s share of the State’s wealth, is being neglected by this metro-centric Government.”

Mr Rundle raised the report in Parliament on October 31 but the Premier seemed unaware of its existence.

“I do not understand how the Member for Pilbara has not broken down the Premier’s or Minister for Education’s door over the state of the second biggest school in his electorate,” Mr Rundle said.

“Again we see the Member for Pilbara failing his constituents, as he has done with his advocacy for a new fly-in, fly-out camp in Karratha despite the community’s opposition. Kevin Michel needs to stop championing FIFO and start fighting for the students and teachers of Hedland SHS.”