Thursday, 28 November 2019
As we look forward to Christmas with family and friends, we can look back over a year of milestones on the Central Coast, starting with Blue Haven Public School's 20th anniversary. Blue Haven has had an outstanding year, having been named Primary School of the Year, Government, and with Principal Paul McDermott having been named Primary Principal of the Year, Government. Just last week Blue Haven was recognised for innovation by The Educator Australia magazine.
Wadalba Community School also celebrated its 20th anniversary. I was pleased to join Principal Jason McGrath and his staff, students and families to mark the occasion at the Wyong Art House. A highlight was the special presentation to Maryann Smith for 20 years of service to Wadalba Community School and for 61 years with the New South Wales Department of Education.
In September I supported the 50th anniversary of Wyoming Public School, with funding towards a commemorative path, recognising school families and showcasing the original school bell, which was tracked down by the P&C President Kate Dwyer on Facebook. Wyoming Public School opened its doors in 1969, the year of the moon landing. The school crest features the lunar landing, and celebrations had a lunar theme, with an astronaut arriving by fire truck.
Both Jilliby Public School and the old Wyong Primary School celebrated their 130th anniversaries. Jilliby Public School was opened in 1889 by William Baldwin, who planted the bunya pine which features on the school's emblem today. Principal Natalie MacDonald said the school had come a long way from a one-room schoolhouse with a fireplace!
My home town, Wyong, was officially founded in 1888, and the old Wyong Primary School opened its doors the very next year. My grandmother Molly attended Wyong Primary School, in the heart of the town, at the top of her street. It's now home to the Wyong Neighbourhood Centre, which marked its 40th birthday this year. The Wyong Neighbourhood Centre is one of the longest-running on the coast, and I was pleased to help president Dawn Hooper with funding towards the fit-out of a new building.
A division having been called in the House of Representatives—
Proceedings suspended from 12 : 50 to 13 : 08
October marked 100 years of the Wyong Tennis Club, and Mavis 'Tiny' Bailey, who is almost 100, along with junior player Teesha Davies, cut the birthday cake. Wyong High School turned 75 this year, making it the second oldest school on the Central Coast. I was pleased to attend the open day, which brought together the whole of the community, and I look forward to seeing the commemorative path marking this anniversary. I know that Principal Rod Hill and P&C President Vanessa Pickles were very proud of the student community's efforts.
The Lions Club of Wyong celebrated its 50th anniversary this year. Congratulations, President Colin Slack, Secretary Marilyn Kinealy and all local Lions. The club has just donated $2,200 for a special chair for a Tacoma Public School student, and its Christmas cakes will soon be available at the Wyong Community Bank Branch of Bendigo Bank and Bunnings.
Yesterday marked 60 years of the Entrance Camera Club, which was formed in 1959 and is affiliated with the New South Wales Federation of Camera Clubs. I attended their recent exhibition to celebrate the milestone. The club has award-winning photographers in its ranks and won first place in the Australian Photographic Society cup in 2019. If you'd like to view their work, the club has two finalists in the 2019 Australian Geographic nature competition currently on exhibition at Sydney's Maritime Museum. I met founding member, Mr Ted Baker, who is 89 and still active in the club. The club welcomes new members and meets on the second Friday evening of each month.
I was sorry I couldn't attend the celebrations for the 20th anniversary of the Salvation Army's Oasis Centre in Wyong last night. The service originally opened to support local young people and, over time, has expanded to boost and support the whole of the community. The cafe and food bank provide opportunities for locals looking to get a foot in the door, with training provided by their dedicated volunteers.
Finally, this Saturday, I'm looking forward to attending the golden jubilee celebrations and dedication of St Mary's Catholic Church in Toukley.
Congratulations to Blue Haven Public School, Wyoming Public School, the old Wyong Primary School, Wyong Neighbourhood Centre, Wyong Tennis Club, Wyong High School, Lions Club of Wyong, the Entrance Camera Club, Oasis Centre and St Mary's in Toukley.
It's wonderful to join celebrations across the year and to recognise the important contributions of so many dedicated school communities, sporting and service clubs and volunteer organisations across the Central Coast. I look forward to celebrating many more local milestones in 2020.
Question agreed to.
Federation Chamber adjourned at 13:10