School security welcome

March 3, 2015 by J-Wire Staff
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The Federal Member for Wentworth, Malcolm Turnbull, has welcomed funding for four local schools under the Coalition Government’s $18 million Schools Security Programme.

Malcolm Turnbull

Malcolm Turnbull

More than $1.78 million has been allocated to Wentworth schools under the programme, which delivers on our election commitment to help schools at risk of attack, harassment or violence caused by racial or religious intolerance.

Around Australia, 54 Government, Jewish, Islamic and Independent schools will benefit from the funding.

The following schools in Wentworth have received funding under the programme:

  • Emanuel School – $372,500
  • Kesser Torah College – $286, 100
  • Moriah War Memorial College – $1,040,800
  • Rose Bay Secondary College – $85,500

For the first time, this funding can now be used to employ security guards, as well as for the installation of security infrastructure such as closed-circuit cameras, security lighting and fencing.

Mr Turnbull, the Federal Minister for Communications,  said that this support recognised the unique security circumstances that some schools unfortunately faced.

“The Coalition Government is serious about providing a safe environment for students, teachers and staff in Australian schools,” Mr Turnbull said.

“All our children have the right to be educated in a safe and secure setting.”

Schools were invited to apply for funding after being nominated by State and Territory Education Ministers and independent schools associations.

Funding was awarded after an assessment of their applications against the criteria set for the Schools Security Programme.

In the meantime Federal member for Melbourne Ports Michael Danby told J-Wire: “It has taken 18 months for the Abbott Government to finally deliver on a bipartisan 2013 election commitment to keep our kids safe.

 Back in 2007, the Labor Government introduced the Secure Schools Program. This gave money for schools at risk of terrorist or hate-crime attacks to build infrastructure to protect themselves. The Labor Government provided $35 million of investment.

In 2013, Labor committed to expand the program to provide funding for security guards. This was welcome news, as parents of children at schools that require guards—like so many of the parents in my electorate—have long had to foot the bill to keep their kids safe.

The Liberal Party matched this policy, and duly provided the $18 million to be spent over the following three years. But then it sat on its hands for 18 months—despite urgent and constant requests from schools for security guard funding—only today announcing the policy in such a way people might imagine it’s new.

I welcome the announcement today that 54 of our most at-risk schools will finally get the urgent funding they were promised 18 months ago by Tony Abbott.



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