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Editions

Docklands kids not welcome

02 Nov 2011

By Bethany Williams

Already without a primary school of their own, Docklands children are now likely to be zoned out of one of the closest government schools.

The Department of Education and Early Childhood Development is likely to announce the rezoning of Port Melbourne Primary School this month.

The Yarra River is the proposed northern boundary, cutting out Docklands.

According to a department spokesperson, Port Melbourne Primary School Council requested that the department consider a neighbourhood boundary due to increasing enrolments in the area.

“The department recognises the need for certainty for families on this matter and expects to have a decision in early November,” the spokesperson said.

According to Port Melbourne Primary School principal Peter Martin, without the rezoning, the school will outgrow its facilities.

Mr Martin said the school had 457 students enrolled this year, 548 enrolled for 2012 and over 600 for the following year.

Mr Martin said the school was waiting on confirmation from the department about the status of new Docklands enrolments for next year. He said the school had been advised not to complete enrolment for Docklands students pending advice from the department regarding the proposed northern boundary.

The school is accepting enrolments from Docklands children whose siblings already attend the school and will continue to do so until directed otherwise.

Mr Martin said some Docklands residents had already expressed their disappointment about the proposed boundary.

“As principal I have mixed feelings about this, the school has grown so much even with just Port Melbourne and Southbank enrolments. However, I feel that all children should be entitled to a local school, which Docklands doesn’t have,” Mr Martin said.

Mr Martin said it was likely Docklands would not be the only area to be locked out.

He believes by next year southern and eastern boundaries will also be announced, restricting parts of South Melbourne and Southbank.

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