MIN­IS­TER NO-SHOW

Nar­ro­gin school com­mu­nity group says it is frus­trated by Ed­u­ca­tion Min­is­ter Sue Ellery’s re­luc­tance to visit the town to face ques­tions over Statewide fund­ing changes to agri­cul­tural col­leges.

Narrogin Observer - - Front Page - Toby Hussey

A Nar­ro­gin school com­mu­nity group says it is frus­trated by Ed­u­ca­tion Min­is­ter Sue Ellery’s re­luc­tance to visit their town to face ques­tions over Statewide fund­ing changes to agri­cul­tural col­leges.

Col­lege of Agri­cul­ture Nar­ro­gin Par­ents and Ci­ti­zens As­so­ci­a­tion pres­i­dent Kevin Lans­dell has sent mul­ti­ple re­quests to Ms Ellery’s of­fice for a school visit to face ques­tions on a De­cem­ber de­ci­sion to pocket a por­tion of prof­its from six WA agri­cul­tural school farms from 2019.

Mr Lans­dell said his re­quests for a meet­ing were re­buffed, be­ing told the min­is­ter was too busy to visit.

Ms Ellery’s of­fice in­stead al­legedly in­vited Nar­ro­gin fam­i­lies to make the nearly five-hour round trip to visit her of­fice, which Mr Lans­dell did not think was good enough.

“We’re full-time work­ers and vol­un­teers with the school, so we can’t re­ally drive to Perth,” he said.

The State Gov­ern­ment funds the agri­cul­tural col­leges, and in De­cem­ber Ms Ellery an­nounced it would be­gin tak­ing a 20 per cent div­i­dend share of the Agri­cul­tural Ed­u­ca­tion Pro­vi­sions Trust Fund from 2019.

The col­leges de­posit about 40 per cent of prof­its into the fund, which is made from farm­ing dur­ing the year.

The money can then be ac­cessed by the col­leges and small farm schools for re­plac­ing agri­cul­tural ma­chin­ery, or for sup­port dur­ing hard sea­sons.

The State Gov­ern­ment share was es­ti­mated to be about $200,000 a year.

Ms Ellery’s of­fice did not re­spond to ques­tions be­fore dead­line.

Pic­ture: Zach Relph

Ed­u­ca­tion Min­is­ter Sue Ellery.

Pic­ture: Laura Gru­bisa

Agri­cul­ture col­leges will have to hand back 20 per cent of their trust fund from 2019.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.