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    Media Statements

    Coat of ArmsMedia Release
    JOINT STATEMENT
    Premier and Minister for the Arts
    The Honourable Annastacia Palaszczuk
    Minister for Education and Minister for Tourism and Major Events
    The Honourable Kate Jones

    Back to School for Queensland students

    JOINT STATEMENT

    Premier and Minister for the Arts
    The Honourable Annastacia Palaszczuk

    Minister for Education and Minister for Tourism and Major Events
    The Honourable Kate Jones

    Monday, January 23, 2017

    Back to School for Queensland students

    This morning marked the start of a new school year for more than 800,000 students across Queensland.

    Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk and Education Minister Kate Jones visited Kelvin Grove State College junior campus today to welcome Prep students to their first day of school.

    “This group is among 48,000 preppies and a total of 543,000 students attending 1239 state schools in Queensland,” said the Premier.

    “A further 266,000 students are attending more than 500 non-state schools, and 2017 is shaping up to be an exciting year for all Queensland students and teachers.

    “Today marks the opening of four new state schools: Cairns State Special School; Fernbrooke State School at Redbank Plains; Pumicestone State School at Caboolture; and Bellbird Park State Secondary College at Ipswich.

    “Our two major education reforms for 2017 are the official introduction of Prep as the first compulsory year of school and the new Australian Curriculum, supported by new streamlined Curriculum into the Classroom (C2C) materials.

    “I want to wish every student the very best for the year ahead and encourage them to make the most of their education in 2017.”

    Ms Jones said the introduction of compulsory Prep would give young Queenslanders the best possible introduction to their schooling.

    “From this year all young Queenslanders will benefit from continuous early learning as they transition directly from kindergarten to Prep,” she said.

    “Importantly, this move does not lower the age of compulsory schooling, which will remain at six years and six months but it does ensure that a child’s first year of formal schooling will be prep.”

    Ms Jones said Queensland students would continue to benefit from more teachers and guidance officers in 2017 as the Palaszczuk Government delivers extra frontline staff in state schools.

    “We’re employing an additional 290 teachers and 15 guidance officers in 2017,” she said.

     “This is part of our Extra Teachers election commitment to hire up to an extra 2,500 teachers and 45 guidance officers between 2016 and 2018.

    “This year we also welcome 1,100 beginning teachers starting in schools across the state.”

    The Premier and Minister also visited a new 16-classroom teaching block under construction at Kelvin Grove State College’s junior campus.

    Ms Jones said the Palaszczuk Government would continue to invest in new classrooms to cater for growth where it is needed most.

    “This $8.6 million project at Kelvin Grove State College will give the school modern new teaching facilities to allow for enrolment growth, including four new Prep classrooms,” she said.

    “In addition more than $94 million in capital works and upgrades has been carried out in schools across the state during the Christmas holidays, providing more than 200 extra classrooms and supporting more than 400 Queensland jobs.”

    “We have invested $25 million to build Cairns State Special School, to provide the best possible educational opportunities for students with disability in the far north.

    “And we’ve also delivered three new schools; Pumicestone State School in Caboolture, Fernbrooke State School in Redbank Plains and Bellbird Park State Secondary College.”

    For more information on the new schools visit:

    The school year is divided into 4 terms of 10 weeks duration.

    • Term 1 Monday 23 January – Friday 31 March
    • Term 2 Tuesday 18 April – Friday 23 June
    • Term 3 Monday 10 July – Friday 15 September
    • Term 4 Tuesday 3 October – Friday 8 December

    Media Contact:

    Premier’s Office:               Geoff Breusch 0417 272 875

    Minister Jones’ Office:      Emma Clarey   0437 069 516