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Last Thursday I had the privilege of opening the Thomas Carr College Trade Training Centre. The $3.2 million facility is part of the Wyndham cluster. This cluster received funds of $9.42 million, resulting in four centres being built within the electorate: one at Thomas Carr College opened last week; one at Grange P-12 College; one at MacKillop Catholic Regional College; and one at Wyndham Central College.I commend Thomas Carr College, and particularly principal Dr Andrew Watson and his team, for all their efforts in delivering this marvellous facility—from the submission writing, the planning, the scoping, to the build and the final fit-out.
The Trade Training Centres in Schools Program was designed to address skill shortages in traditional trades and, importantly, in emerging industries. It was designed to equip schools with the state-of-the-art, industry-standard facilities they need. As a former principal, I would add that time and time again I have seen, and research has borne out, that a student's pride in their learning environment leads to increased self-esteem, manifesting often in improved student outcomes. These centres go a long way towards building that self-esteem.
It is extremely disappointing, however, Deputy Speaker Scott, as you will be aware, that the Abbott government has cut the program, and in doing so is denying so many other schools and students such a wonderful opportunity to broaden their educational experience.
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