I am pleased Education Minister James Merlino has agreed to visit Shepparton next month.
It is important we move with enthusiasm to change the education outcomes for our children. Three of our secondary colleges have had significant falls in enrolments in recent years. There are many factors which are affecting this and it is a well-known fact that students in regional areas, of indigenous background, and from disadvantaged socio-economic backgrounds can have poorer educational outcomes.
This issue goes beyond funding for school facilities and we need government support and intervention to help us make the changes we need.
I’m pleased the Ministerial Council has agreed there must be a full socio economic study completed on the Murray Darling Basin Plan, which includes a thorough investigation on the impact of the removal of a further 450GL from the southern Basin.
The GMID Water Leadership Forum, which I chair, has made many representations, particularly to Victorian Water Minister Lisa Neville, to ensure the Murray Darling Basin Authority would be reviewing the very important issue of the up water.
The independent analysis will report in December, although I call on the Water Minister to bring this date forward given that much of the socio-economic research has already been done in Victoria.
Immunisation Registration Concern
It has been brought to my attention there is a problem with recording vaccinations in circumstances, where parents present with their child prior to the child reaching exactly six weeks of age.
Apparently the computer system will not register any child under that age, and accordingly parents are either vaccinating at that stage without the benefit of registration, or being sent away to return at a later time.
I have asked the Minister for Health Jill Hennessy to fix this problem in the immunisation registration system.