Private sector invited to build 10 new Qld state schools
THE Queensland Government is extending its privatisation push from health to state schools with plans to invite businesses to build and maintain 10 new schools.
Treasurer Tim Nicholls says the Queensland Schools Project will see private companies contracted to finance, design, construct and maintain the package of new schools.
All core education services will continue to be delivered by Education Queensland.
The move comes on the back of a push by the State Government to place the running of the planned Sunshine Coast University Hospital in private hands, which has been met with community protests and concerns from health care providers.
"The Public Private Partnership will deliver value for money for Queensland taxpayers," Mr Nicholls said in a statement this morning.
"It will also improve educational outcomes by allowing principals and teachers to concentrate on education while the maintenance and upkeep of facilities is taken care of."
Minister for Education, Training and Employment John-Paul Langbroek said that Queensland had a rapidly rising student population and more schools would be needed to accommodate this growth in the future.
"In order to meet the demand for new schools we need to look beyond traditional methods of building and financing new schools," Mr Langbroek said.
"That's why the Newman Government is taking an innovative approach to addressing our infrastructure needs to ensure that every dollar spent on new schools gives taxpayers the best bang for their buck."
Mr Langbroek said the 10 new schools would consist of two secondary and eight primary schools, catering for up to 10,800 students during periods of peak enrolment.
"The schools will employ up to 540 teachers and 130 non-teaching positions," he said.
Mr Nicholls said the project would also boost economic activity in the state's South-East during the five-year construction phase.
"It will generate around 1700 jobs a year, mostly in the construction sector, providing a much-needed boost to one of Queensland's economic pillars," he said.
Interested parties have until March 14 to register their interest in the project, which is being driven through Projects Queensland.
Further information is available at the Projects Queensland website by following the Queensland Schools Project link.