Regional communities surrounding Port Pirie will be invited to have their say about the Year 7 to high school pilot program, as the Department of Education looks into the issues of isolation and travelling for students.
The consultation will be testing the possibility of providing families with a choice to keep their Year 7 child in primary school, if their primary school is located more than 20 kilometres from its nearest area or high school.
The Department are considering a model based on a Western Australian approach, where the option would be available for a limited period of three years from the 2022 statewide transition date, to ensure a smooth system changeover.
Over 40 schools have been identified that are located more than 20 kilometres from their nearest high school, this includes Bute Primary School, Snowtown Primary School, Spalding Primary School and Wilmington Primary School.
The project director for the Year 7 to high school pilot Caroline Croser- Barlow says that they know many regional families travel considerable distances to get their children to school and they want to be able to make the best decisions moving forward
"We're keen to hear from regional communities about our proposal to offer flexibility to those families in the move of Year 7 to high school.
"The information gathered through community consultation will also help us address other issues of concern, as we move toward the introduction of Year 7 in all South Australian public high schools from term 1, 2022," Caroline said.
The information gathered through the consultation process will help the Department of Education to better understand any local implications about the move of Year 7 students and will be compiled into a report will inform the government's final decision about how to best respond to the needs of regional communities.
To have your say, head to the YourSAy website and provide your feedback on the proposed approach as well as raise any local concerns or issues that you have.