Dr CLOSE (Port Adelaide—Deputy Leader of the Opposition) (24 July 2018). Can the minister guarantee that John Pirie Secondary School will receive $10 million under the Building Better Schools Infrastructure Program and be able to progress with plans to build new facilities for the middle school precinct, indoor/outdoor learning areas, refurbishing and extending performing arts facility and improving building exteriors, as outlined on the Department for Education and Child Development's website?
The Hon. J.A.W. GARDNER (Morialta—Minister for Education): I have been advised of the following:
The Hon. J.A.W. GARDNER:TAFE SA has a proud history of delivering quality vocational education and training to help South Australians gain the skills they need to embark on a new career. Equally important has been TAFE SA's role in helping South Australian businesses and industries to fill their skills and workforce needs in order for them to prosper. Recent years have seen significant and well-documented difficulties, highlighted by the Skills for All blowout and last year's ASQA audit turmoil. Traineeship and apprenticeship numbers have dramatically declined, and confidence in quality needs to be restored.
Ms BEDFORD: With interest in and promotion of STEM subjects well and truly underway, what thought is being given to the other side of brains and the importance of the humanities and, perhaps, similar emphasis on LAMP subjects, subjects like language, arts, music and philosophy?
The Hon. J.A.W. GARDNER (Morialta—Minister for Education) (15:54): I am very grateful to the member for Florey for that outstanding question because it is important that we do pursue a strong STEM strategy. It's possibly one of the few particular focuses of the former minister that I have given credit to: the STEM strategy, STEM Works facilities, infrastructure projects that are being rolled out and, indeed, development in STEM PD for teachers. So there has been some good work.
The election seems like a distant memory as the new Government has been busy delivering our reform agenda. I would like to take this opportunity to thank the community for their continued faith in me as their local MP.
For the first time in sixteen years we have a new Government. I can report that our Premier Steven Marshall is working extremely hard to ensure we deliver on our key election commitments of more jobs, lower costs and better services.
The Hon. J.A.W. GARDNER (Morialta—Minister for Education) (17:36): I am very pleased to be able to speak on the Summary Offences (Disrespectful Conduct in Court) Amendment Bill. This is, of course, a piece of legislation that the Attorney-General brought to this house having previously raised a number of matters that are contained in the bill in the House of Assembly in previous years—I believe a couple of years ago as a private member's bill. It has come back to the house in relation to a range of matters, some of which have been brought forward in the public consciousness with respect to matters that have happened in other jurisdictions and some of which, indeed, are matters that have been particularly pertinent in South Australia.
Mr CREGAN (Kavel) (14:54):My question is to the Minister for Education. Can the minister update the house on programs the government is supporting in relation to language education?
The Hon. J.A.W. GARDNER (Morialta—Minister for Education) (14:54):I am very pleased to have that question from the member for Kavel, who I know has a strong passion for education, being the son of educators. His passion for his schools is very strong. I can inform the house that I get a letter or a phone call from the member for Kavel at least once a week, and I think that is something that a number of other ministers are familiar with. He is an excellent local member, always advocating for his schools and indeed for education across the state.
Mr TEAGUE (Heysen) (15:10):My question is to the Minister for Education. Can the minister update the house on progress towards meeting the government's election commitments relating to literacy and numeracy?
The Hon. J.A.W. GARDNER (Morialta—Minister for Education) (15:10):I thank the member for Heysen for his question and his particular interest in the importance of literacy and numeracy, which I am sure all members are aware is the foundation upon which so much of a child's education and further success in school and in life is built.
Mr TEAGUE: Can the minister update the house about activities of students engaging in STEM studies in the course of these school holidays?
The Hon. J.A.W. GARDNER (Morialta—Minister for Education) (14:43): I am very pleased to have that question from the member for Heysen who I know is greatly interested in his local schools and the activities of students. During the school holidays, I was very pleased to go to Mylor in the member for Heysen's electorate and spend some time with 108 students from around South Australia who are engaged in the STEM Explorer Program, year 7 and 8 students, who enjoyed their—and can I say from experience—extremely cold day in Mylor, indeed a cold week in Mylor. We also visited some other facilities around the state as they learnt more about STEM careers and the opportunities available through science and mathematics studies, the opportunities available to them further in life.
The Hon. J.A.W. GARDNER: I would like to provide the house with an update on the situation that occurred at Renmark High School yesterday afternoon. An incident occurred where a 17-year-old student was seriously injured by another student. Our thoughts are, of course, with the injured student and her family as she continues to receive treatment at the Royal Adelaide Hospital, and I know that all members wish her a full and speedy recovery.
Student and staff safety should always be the first priority in situations like this. I wish to thank the school principal and staff for their courage in acting swiftly and decisively in such difficult circumstances. They alerted police, provided critical first aid to the injured student, and minimised risk to other students and staff. Schools have emergency procedures in place and undertake practice