Cold wa­ter poured over heated schools

The Observer - - NEWS -

THE Queens­land Pre­mier has poured cold wa­ter on a sug­ges­tion to move Queens­land’s school hol­i­days in an ef­fort to beat the heat in class­rooms.

Queens­land Pre­mier An­nasta­cia Palaszczuk said there were no plans to change the school cal­en­dar, and there was a pro­gres­sive roll­out of air­con­di­tion­ing in state schools.

The Queens­land Teach­ers’ Union has made the sug­ges­tion to bring Queens­land in line with south­ern states and start and fin­ish school hol­i­days later, com­ing back at the start of Fe­bru­ary.

The NSW “western divi­sion” starts the school year on Fe­bru­ary 5 and fin­ishes De­cem­ber 22.

It fol­lows the Lib­eral Na­tional Party Op­po­si­tion propos­ing a plan to air-con­di­tion ev­ery state school class­room in Queens­land, with leader Deb Freck­ling­ton la­belling the hol­i­day move a “con”.

“The hottest day last year was Fe­bru­ary 12, so if you push the hol­i­days back you’re still po­ten­tially go­ing to have the hottest day of the year be a school day,” Ms Freck­ling­ton said.

But Pre­mier An­nasta­cia Palaszczuk said there were no plans to change the school cal­en­dar.

“I think $21 mil­lion has been al­lo­cated this fi­nan­cial year, we’ve got our Cooler Schools pro­gram, so we have a range of mea­sures hap­pen­ing across the state,” the pre­mier said.

The LNP’s plan had been costed sev­eral years ago at around $2 bil­lion, but Ms Freck­ling­ton in­sisted those num­bers were out of date, and her pro­posed plan would be cheaper, al­though she couldn’t of­fer more de­tailed fig­ures.

NO CHANGE: An­nasta­cia Palaszczuk re­jects new school hol­i­days dates.

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