After the announcement that ACT Students would not be returning to school during Term 2 the P&C drafted and sent a letter to Chief Minister Berry advocating for the earlier return of students to the College. Our P&C President, Jenny Grant-Curnow, was interviewed by the Canberra Times which resulted in a very positive and balanced article, and ultimately a positive outcome and the return of students to school in Week 4 Term 2, 2020.
Please see below for letter sent to Chief Minister advocating for reopening of the college for our students.
The P&C actively advocated with the ACT Government to progress the modernisation of the school campus. A number of buildings had been demolished in 2018 due to asbestos contamination and the Education Directorate constructed the demountable ‘Village’ complex which sits on the site of the old oval.
Although the students enjoy the Village, as a P&C, we wanted to ensure that the College modernisation continues so that our children are not studying in transportable buildings into the future.
The P&C met with Education Minister Yvette Berry and of the ACT Education Directorate officials on 17 June 2019 to progress this conversation.
Minister Berry said Narrabundah College was an important part of the ACT education system and had a strong future given the expected population growth in the Inner South. The Minister committed to conducting community consultations that would engage students, school management, parents and residents.
We were pleased to hear Minister Berry underline how important it will be to preserve the special culture of Narrabundah College throughout the rebuild process. We conveyed the feedback we have had from the community that our high-performing and diverse College requires contemporary infrastructure that both integrates technology and will be environmentally sustainable.
“Operating for more than 40 years, Narrabundah College is well-loved and well-attended,” Ms Berry said in the local media. “Now it is time to talk about how it will operate for the next 40 years and beyond.
In response to our advocacy, the government initiated six weeks of community consultations in October and November 2019, engaging with students, teachers, parents, local residents and businesses and other key stakeholders. Conversations were also held with local high schools and primary schools in the local area to try to understand the views of pipeline students. A summary of the consultations concept note can be found here.
Prior to these community consultations, our P&C set up an 'Ginger Group' of active students, teachers and parents to forge some innovative thinking on what we would like to see from the college modernisation.
One of the products developed was a design vision for a possible redevelopment of the Narrabundah College campus, led by our talented architecture teachers. [Renae - insert to picture here]
Some of the ideas of the Ginger Group included:the College site has a unique, natural and peaceful feel. We'd like to retain that and build around the great trees on campus. People love the Quad and want the oval back!
natural light and materials, large windows and warm, sheltered spaces were in popular demand.
technology to support learning and environmental features such as solar, water capture and gardens should be integrated.
some large multipurpose spaces will encourage collaboration. Teachers also want classrooms that allow students to focus.
A 'student hub’ could include a café/ canteen (with good coffee), relaxed social areas and Student Services nearby.
A central area with satellite buildings would allow the faculties to have their own personalities and meeting places. The College is a system, not just a set of buildings. With that in mind, do we want one distinct centre or multiple hubs?
A gym with training weights and lock-up bicycle areas and showers will encourage people to exercise and ride to the College. That's good for student wellbeing.
Our P&C will continue to work with the College leadership, community, government and stakeholders to ensure we continue to advocate for the modernisation of the school to meet our children’s present and future education needs.
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