NSW to spend $5 billion on education strategy - Education Matters Magazine
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NSW to spend $5 billion on education strategy

The New South Wales Government has announced a $5 billion strategy to deal with soaring enrolments.

Public school enrolments are expected to grow by 21 per cent or around 164,000 additional students by 2031, with most of this growth expected in Sydney.

Education Minister Rob Stokes last week announced the establishment of a new delivery unit to oversee the planning, supply and maintenance of NSW schools.

Education Infrastructure NSW will ensure there is sufficient supply of learning spaces in government schools to meet the significant growth in student numbers predicted over the next 15 years.

Mr Stokes said soaring public education enrolments was due to a baby boom, a strong NSW economy attracting young families and world-class academic standards.

“It’s great news that in many parts of NSW there are strong increases in student numbers in government schools and this is a trend expected to grow in the years ahead,” Mr Stokes said.

“The establishment of the new agency underlines the high priority the NSW Government is placing on effectively responding to this growth.”

Mr Stokes said Education Infrastructure NSW will supply learning spaces that support modern teaching pedagogy, provide sufficient play space, and incorporate sustainable design principles.

A central focus for the unit will be ensuring that consultation with local communities takes place early in the process of planning for new and upgraded school infrastructure to ensure it reflects community aspirations.

Among the specific challenges Education Infrastructure NSW will be required to deliver on ensuring the Department’s maintenance backlog is effectively managed. The agency will also be tasked with implementing joint community use and partnership models to provide cost effective and community-focused solutions.

The creation of the new unit with a single focus on infrastructure delivery will enable the Department of Education to maintain focus on its strengths, continuing to deliver the high quality teaching and learning outcomes that are attracting a growing number of students to NSW government schools.

The NSW Government plans to advertise the position of chief executive of Education Infrastructure NSW.

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