THE federal Coalition has announced funding to build a new $1 million trades skills centre at Gloucester High.
Lyne MP Dr David Gillespie said the $995,000 project would provide students at Gloucester High with the opportunity to strengthen business and industry training relationships and future employment opportunities.
“This Federal funding has been approved to establish the Gloucester High School Metal Industries Trades Skills Centre helping to give students qualifications including Certificate 1 Manufacturing (Pathways) and Certificate 1 Engineering,” Dr Gillespie said.
“The Trades Skills Centre includes the refurbishment of an existing metals room to incorporate an engineering workshop and an outdoor covered area and also the provision of equipment. It will deliver qualifications in engineering to address skills shortages in the trades of metal fabricator and metal machinist (first class).”
The funding comes on top of an $800,000 commitment by the State government to refurbish and refit the school’s woodwork rooms.
Gloucester High is one of the only schools in the region without such a facility.
The school’s head teacher of technical and applied sciences (TAS) Mik Wisely said a public works application to upgrade the school’s wood and metal technology facilities had first been submitted in 1996.
“We’ve submitted two more applications since 2011,” principal Pat Cavanagh said.
“We’re one of the last schools to get a trade training centre and we’re the most isolated school in the district.”
Mr Cavanagh said work on the trades training centre would most likely start in 2015 while the refurbishment of the woodwork rooms would most likely take place early this year.
Mr Wisely said the new facilities would bring Gloucester High up to speed as a learning centre.
“This will bring us more in line with TAFE standards and those facilities used elsewhere in the community,” he said.
“In addition to meeting workplace health and safety requirements, this will allow us to host adult education seminars, training days and external VET (Vocational Education and Training) courses.
“It has obvious benefits for students looking to go into the metal fabrication, electrical or mining industries.”