Sydney Morning Herald – Anger at Sale of School

This story appeared in today’s Sydney Morning Herald. smh_logo
by Jennie Curtin

June 26, 2009

THE former Enmore Public School would make an ideal child-care centre and annexe for the nearby TAFE college, locals believe, but instead the State Government plans to sell it to developers to be converted into units.

Residents say there is a desperate need for child-care places with existing preschools full and waiting lists long. They suspect the State Government, which maintains there is no need for an education centre in the area, has been working from old figures which fail to show the increasing number of young families with children living in the inner west.

They say the State Government could take advantage of a Rudd Government initiative on early-learning centres and get the building converted using federal funds.
Alan Croker, convener of the residents’ group opposing the July 7 auction, said the site would be the “perfect location” for an early-learning centre and it could be shared with the Enmore Design Centre, a TAFE institution nearby.

Mr Croker, a part-time teacher at the design centre, said facilities there were deficient. “They need workshop spaces, lecture spaces and an expanded library.”

The Rudd Government has earmarked the inner west as one of 11 NSW sites in need of an early-learning centre but as yet no site has been selected.

Cathy Peters, a Greens member of Marrickville Council, said the heritage-listed school, which was built in 1887 and operated as a school until 2003, presented a golden opportunity

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