4. Apr, 2018

Community fight to save Moora Residential College goes global in social media campaign

Jenne Brammer  |  The West Australian https://thewest.com.au/business/community-fight-to-save-moora-residential-college-goes-global-in-social-media-campaign-ng-b88792522z

The Moora College campaign has garnered support from around the world.

The fight to keep Moora Residential College open has gone global, with the grassroots campaign garnering support from around the world.

A social media campaign has been flooded with photos posted from as far afield as the US, UK, Europe, Africa and Asia, as well as from across Australia.

Supporters have been taking photos on holiday while others are calling on international and Eastern States friends and family to spread the message and send photos to the supporters’ social media sites.

Meanwhile, closer to home WA travellers are decorating their vehicles with messages of support for the college.

WA Premier Mark McGowan and Education Minister Sue Ellery are continuing to stand by the decision to close the college amid the tough budgetary climate.

Central Midland Senior High School council chairwoman Melissa Cameron said supporters had tried to get the State Government’s attention through face-to-face meetings and a rally at Parliament House, but the efforts had so far been ignored.

“We have been putting up banners wherever people can see them,” Ms Cameron said.

“Because there are many supporters with friends and family throughout the world, we knew we could also take the message further afield. It’s snowballed from there.”

There is also a targeted effort to gain the attention of electorates held by Labor MPs, including a petition signing at Mr McGowan’s office in Rockingham over the weekend.

The Government argues it will cost $8.7 million to upgrade the college, but Central Midland Senior High School P&C president Tracey Errington said only repairs and maintenance was needed, which could be done for $500,000.

The Government is refusing to allow an assessor to access the property for an independent review.

“The Government is digging in its heels as it does not want to be seen to do another backflip after backing down over its plans to close the School of the Air,” Ms Errington said.

“But we want the Government to know our support is growing and we are not going away. For $500,000 to keep the college open, we would go away.”

Closing Moora Residential College, a public accommodation facility for remote and isolated students, at the end of 2018 will mean students wanting to continue their studies at CMSHS will not have anywhere to stay.

CMSHS is the only public senior high school between Geraldton and Perth offering studies including ATAR, VET and Cert studies to Year 12 with in-class teachers.

Nationals MP and Member for Moore Shane Love said the Government remained clueless about the impact closing the college would have on the community.

He said the closure could also see CMSHS downgraded to district high school status, meaning students would have to go elsewhere to complete Years 11 and 12.

“The State Government’s blind decision-making when it comes to regional education has left thousands of regional West Australians fearful about education options for their children,” he said.

Help Save Moora College and sign the petition https://www.change.org/p/premier-mark-mcgowan-save-moora-college?recruiter=867672333&utm_source=share_petition&utm_medium=twitter&utm_campaign=psf_combo_share_initial.nafta_milestone_share_ask_victory.control&utm_term=share_petition