Devastated students say ‘we don’t want your super school’

STUDENTS at Murwillumbah East Public School were still waiting for long-promised new buildings after damage caused by the 2017 flood.

Now, they have been left upset and angry over a decision to merge four Murwillumbah schools.

MEPS student Zoe Johnson, Year 5, said she was “devastated” when she heard of plans for her campus to be amalgamated with Murwillumbah Primary School and Murwillumbah and Wollumbin High Schools in a new $100 million mega-campus.

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The new school, announced by the state government last week, is to be known as Murwillumbah Education Campus.

“We’ve been told that we’re going to be getting new buildings and obviously that’s untruthful now,” Zoe said.

“I think the government should be truthful.

“We like it how it is.

“Just give us our new buildings please. We don’t want a super school.”

Fellow student Isaac Rose, who is in Year 6, said he would be sad to see the history of his school disappear.

“It’s terrible that they didn’t let our community have a say in it,” Isaac said.

“Our P & C have been fighting to get us our new buildings.

“We’re still recovering from (Cyclone) Debbie.

“Senior students are in demountables at this point.

“We want our future generations to come here because it’s a really nice school.

“It’s a disgraceful decision to not let our community have a say.”

NSW Labor leader Jodi McKay, Lismore MP Janelle Saffin, federal Richmond MP Justine Elliot and members of the school community gathered outside MEPS on Wednesday.

Barry Miller was treasurer of the MEPS P & C in the 80s, has been a principal at three high schools and worked at Murwillumbah High School in the late 80s and early 90s.

Wollumbin High School opened on North Arm Rd, on the western side of the town, in 1995.

Mr Miller said he was “stunned” when he heard of the announced merger.

“I can’t see how a mega-campus could possibly fit on the site of the existing Murwillumbah High School,” Mr Miller said.

The government has said there are also plans for a health hub on the site but Mr Miller said he’s unsure how this will work.

“I’d say to the government, we want your $100 million,” he said.

“I don’t know where that figure comes from … (but) I’d say to them we want your $100 million and we want it to improve the schools we already have because they serve our community.”

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