Catholic Schools Building the Education Revolution
Since the 1960s both the Federal and State governments have been important providers of funding for the education of students in Catholic schools. In February 2009, the Australian Government announced it would be injecting $14.7 billion into education over three years, as part of the economic stimulus package, called the Building the Education Revolution (BER) program.
Every Australian school has been able to access a part of the government’s investment of $987.2 million during the 2008/09 financial year, $8.5 billion over 2009/10 and $5.2 billion in 2010/11.
As the ongoing population shift to the west of Sydney continues to increase the demand for Catholic education in the Diocese of Parramatta, the government initiative has been welcomed by school communities in this diocese.
The Diocese of Parramatta is located in one of the fastest growing areas of New South Wales. The diocese is west of Sydney and reaches from Dundas Valley, west to Katoomba, south to Luddenham and north to Richmond. There are 78 Catholic systemic schools in the diocese (54 primary and 22 secondary) with a total student population of over 41,000 students.
On Wednesday 5 December, Loyola Senior High School, Mt Druitt held an opening and blessing ceremony for their new Catholic Trade Training Centre funded under the Australian Government’s Trade Training Centres in Schools Program.
Throughout October and November, a number of blessing ceremonies have been held at schools across the Parramatta diocese, which were completed under the Australian Government’s Building the Education (BER) program.
An opening and blessing ceremony was held on Friday 19 October at Our Lady Queen of Peace Primary, Greystanes to officially open their $3.2 million newly constructed and refurbished classrooms funded by the Government's BER program.