The Coolamon annexe of Ellenbrook Primary School will become a school in its own right this year.
Education Minister Colin Barnett said today the school, which opened as an annexe of Ellenbrook in February last year, would be reclassified as Coolamon Primary School ready for next month’s start to the 2001 school year.
A principal will be appointed to the new school - based in shops in the new Ellenbrook suburb of Coolamon - and it will receive additional resources from the Western Australian Education Department.
“Not only does this burgeoning community have its own campus before time, it will now have its own principal and more autonomy to make decisions for its students,” Mr Barnett said.
Coolamon will be WA’s third School in Shops.
Secret Harbour’s School in Shops, the successful model for the interim schools, opened in 1997 and the South-West community of Dalyellup Beach was told by Mr Barnett late last year that it was to have its own School in Shops this year.
Ellenbrook also has WA’s first School in Houses.
“Initiatives such as our Schools in Shops and Schools in Houses are innovative ways we can provide educational facilities for families, well before the population size justifies building a permanent school in a new community,” Mr Barnett said.
“Parents, staff and students at Ellenbrook and at the other Schools in Houses and Schools in Shops have been very strong advocates of the models.
“I understand the annexe has 77 students already and that this number is estimated to expand to 180 next year.”
Mr Barnett said that, as a new school in its own right, Coolamon would be able to provide educational programs suited to the needs of local students.
“Creating these facilities allows us to provide a local school for students as their area grows and it makes transition to the permanent school easier,” he said.
“They are designed to be as similar to a normal school as possible so they’re a novel but also a very productive environment for students.”
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