24 February 2023

Anglicans win tender for new independent school in Wright

| Kim Treasure
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Map of new Wright school site

The site proposed for the new Anglican school in Wright. Photo: Supplied.

The ACT Government has completed a tender process that will see the first independent school built in the Molonglo Valley.

The Anglican Diocese of Canberra and Goulburn has been successful in obtaining the site reserved for an independent school in Wright, Minister for Planning and Land Management Mick Gentleman said.

”As the first non-government school for the Molonglo Valley, the new independent school will be a welcome addition for the region,” Mr Gentleman said.

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“In selecting the successful tender for this project, we made sure that the new school will meet the needs and desires of a growing community.”

The school will be completed in stages and will eventually cater to more than 1800 students from early learning to year 12.

The early learning centre and kindergarten are due to open in 2026, with the primary and secondary schools and college due to follow suit over the following three years.

Sign for new Wright school

The new school will eventually cater to more than 1800 students. Photo: Supplied.

The school is also aiming to be one of the first zero energy-certified schools in Australia, under the International Living Future Institute’s certification program.

ACT Minister for Education and Youth Affairs Yvette Berry said the decision by the ACT Government to accept the tender from the Anglican Diocese of Canberra and Goulburn would provide further educational options for the growing population of Molonglo.

“I’m looking forward to seeing a vibrant school community spring up here in the years to come, enabling more students to be educated close to where they live,” Minister Berry said.

Bishop Mark Short, from the Diocese of Canberra and Goulburn, said he was “thrilled” by the announcement.

“Our team has worked on developing this proposal for a long time and is excited to have the opportunity to deliver new school places and educational options to the people of Canberra,” he said.

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“It is important to us that our education program keeps pace with modern learning and is delivered in a high-quality environment that gives all students the chance to explore their options to reach their full potential.”

The Anglican Diocese of Canberra and Goulburn currently runs five diocesan schools and three “company schools”.

The diocesan schools are Burgmann Anglican School, Gungahlin and Forde; Riverina Anglican College, Wagga Wagga; Sapphire Coast Anglican College, Bega; St Peter’s Anglican College, Broulee; and The Anglican School, Googong.

The company schools are Canberra Girls Grammar, Canberra Grammar and Radford College.

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Okay, good. Happy to see its a non-governmental school, that means none of my tax dollars go to it, right? I’m happy to fund public (non-religious) schools. If someone wants their child to be indoctrinated into their own religious beliefs, I’m all for them being able to do, at their expense.

GrumpyGrandpa10:04 pm 26 Feb 23

Are you also opposed to the Anglicans contributing their religious money towards the ACT’s Government coffers, through the winning of this tender? Are you opposed to religious money creating jobs during construction and once the school is established?

Sadly, I feel your anti-religious bias overlooks the value to the community that this school will bring, particularly given the standard of the public system in Canberra.

Chris Hellessey8:38 pm 27 Feb 23

No religion should be allowed near children. Period.
Once they’re 18yo they can learn and practise what they want (so to say).
Even though the church has an embarrassingly large enough bank account to wear a lot of the cost of a school, the Commonwealth and the ACT Government still foot much of the bill: https://www.canberratimes.com.au/story/6445088/private-schools-must-learn-to-live-without-government-funding/
Let’s call religious teaching of children what is really is: Child abuse.

GrumpyGrandpa3:58 pm 28 Feb 23

Chris, they are some fairly strong words!
What you are saying is that parents who choose to send their children to schools that have a faith basis, are enabling child abuse!

In Australia, the right to religion faith is protected at law. I’d recommend that you keep your bias private.

Martin Keast8:43 pm 28 Feb 23

Religious people pay taxes and are therefore entitled to have some funding to go to a school aligned with their values. We should have vouchers which people can take to the school of their choice – then people can have what they want without the greedy public schools hogging all the coerced tax funding and giving crumbs to the private schools.

Mansell Industries8:36 am 26 Feb 23

In the ACT (from the ABS – https://www.abs.gov.au/statistics/people/education/schools/latest-release) 39.1% of kids go to private schools and this percentage is going up (and at an increasing rate). The ACT has the highest percentage of kids going to private schools across all states and territories. In high schools in the ACT the percentage of ids in private schools is substantially higher than 39.1% as private school have an additional intake of students in year 7 – some say the percentage of kids in private schools in the ACT is approaching 50% (there are the same number of public schools offering y7-10 and there are private schools offering y7-10 in the ACT).

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