Brimbank council will call on the state government for immediate action to prevent a looming education “disaster” in Derrimut.
Despite a huge growth in population, there are no government secondary schools in the suburb.
Students who live in Derrimut are zoned to either Sunshine College or Victoria University Secondary College, both a considerable distance away.
In May, mayor Lucinda Congreve called for research to be undertaken into the provision of a secondary college in the suburb.
She said the results were alarming.
“There are two challenges facing Derrimut students,” she said. “They are the distances they have to travel to get to school … our research found that it can take up to one hour to get to school on public transport, a mere five kilometres [away].
“The other is there’s a lack of options. Due to population increases in years to come, Derrimut students may not even be zoned to either of the two schools currently available.”
The council’s research suggests the Derrimut secondary school population will likely double in the next five to 10 years.
Upgrades to campuses at VU Secondary College and Sunshine College will increase enrolment capacity to 2600, but Cr Congreve said it’s nowhere near enough.
“If 60 per cent of the projected secondary-aged students in Derrimut and the surrounding areas were to attend both schools, that would be over 5000 students that would need to be accommodated.
“The capacity is only 2600. It does not take high school maths to work out that there is a significant shortfall – 2400 spots are short.
“We’re not short of one school, we’re short of two schools in Derrimut. Put simply and frankly, this is a complete disaster for the Derrimut community.”
Cr Congreve said the state government must be immediately made aware of the gap and must move swiftly to rectify it.