NSW Labor has slammed the Baird Government for breaking its pre-election promise to buy land to expand a desperately overcrowded Inner West primary school.
Premier Mike Baird and Education Minister Adrian Piccoli have backed away from a four-year negotiation to purchase land owned by the Anglican Church next to the Homebush West Public School.
Labor questioned Mike Baird in Parliament today, asking the Premier to explain to the school community why he had walked away from its commitment.
Parents, who were in the gallery for question time, are outraged at the backflip and say the school is so short on space that children cannot properly utilise the playground.
It is the second time in less than a year that the Baird Government has broken a promise relating to NSW schools.
In June, Mr Piccoli backed down on his promise to build a new Ultimo Public School in the inner city – another area in desperate need of more facilities to cater for the booming school-aged population.
The Baird Government also ignored an opportunity to expand the overcrowded Lidcombe Public School by selling off a former RMS Registry next door – rather than handing it over to the school.
It comes as the Government scrambles to fill the budget hole left in the Education Department as a result of the botched LMBR program roll-out.
Quotes attributable to NSW Opposition Leader Luke Foley
“These broken promises come as the Education Department desperately tries to fill the hole left by the LMBR budget blow-out.
“Schools across NSW are stretched. Here we have a completely logical solution to purchase land from the church next door yet the Baird Government is walking away.
“It was politically convenient for Mike Baird and Adrian Piccoli to make these promises during an election. They have turned their backs on the Homebush West and Ultimo communities.”
Quotes attributable to the Member for Strathfield Jodi McKay
“The Homebush West school community deserves better. I will continue to fight alongside them for a solution that’s best for the school community.
“It is an outrageous breach of trust with the electorate. The Baird Government has let our community down.”