The Southern Cross : December 2010
The Southern Cross December 2010 Page 5 www.adelaide.catholic.org.au news Automotive Building & Construction Commercial Cookery Electrotechnology Hairdressing Metals & Engineering Plumbing Applied Engineering ST PATRICK'S TECHNICAL COLLEGE Northern Adelaide 2-6HookeRoad Elizabeth West SA 5113 1300 765 384 www.stpatstech.sa.edu.au IT'S NOT TOO LATE To secure a place at the College and begin your trade career in 2011 St Patrick's Technical College provides a trade focused SACE education for Year 11 & 12 students. Let us assist you in completing school while getting started on a trade career with a school based apprenticeship. For more information call 1300 765 384 Enrolling now for 2011 By Rebecca DiGirolamo Catholic schools across South Australia are being forced to spend hundreds of thousands of dollars upgrading security as the risky summer-holiday period looms when school breaks for seven weeks on December 10. South Australian Police expect about 20 incidents of property damage to public and non-government schools each year from around mid- December to the end of January. "School holidays are traditionally more renowned for malicious damage, like breaking windows, and graffiti, mainly because no-one is around," said Catholic Church Insurances Ltd (CCI) property claims manager Effie Valavanis. She said the damage bill for Catholic schools across Australia for the 2010/11 summer break could amount to tens of thousands of dollars, with many schools having to spend precious school resources on costly security. South of the city, a Catholic school has spent more than $167,000 in recent years upgrading lighting, window screens and fencing. Over the past four years the school has been routinely hit by vandalism, with a $16,300 repair bill for glass alone. This is in addition to ongoing security costs, which include random patrols, of about $10,000 a year. A Catholic school west of Adelaide is expecting a graffiti bill of about $500 when school resumes on January 31, in addition to the $1000 needed for extra security patrols. The school is considering adding security cameras. Catholic Education SA resource operations co-ordinator Jan Hurley said most of the 103 Catholic schools in the Adelaide and Port Pirie dioceses have in recent years erected fencing, some through the federal government's BER funding. "That has been a great deterrent," she said. CCI national manager for risk management Mark Wilson said schools were "easy targets" during the holiday period, with most vandalism occurring at night. He said simple steps could be taken to avoid damage. "You can reduce the risk quite easily." The South Australian Education Department says it was last year hit with a $7.5 million bill for theft, vandalism and arson across 580 public schools. A spokeswoman said more police patrols would be added during the holidays. "Reports of criminal activity are monitored on a daily basis to make sure security patrols are operating where they are most needed." SAPOL Crime Prevention state coordinator senior sergeant Joanne Howard said government and non- government schools should become accredited in the School Watch Level 1 Certification program. The program encourages schools to take a more proactive role in their own safety and security. About 1400 schools, including Catholic schools, are involved in the program. NEW KIDS ON THE BLOCK: These five-year-olds will be among thousands of new students walking through the gates of Catholic schools across South Australia next year. They will join 860 children at the Holy Family Primary School (R-7) in Parafield Gardens when the school year starts on January 31. Principal Kerry White said next year's enrolments had increased by 30 students compared with 2010. The enrolment figures for all Catholic schools in South Australia will be finalised in a few months. This year 48,817 students were enrolled in 103 Catholic schools -- up 866 students from 2009. Catholic Education South Australia assistant director Helen O'Brien said: "Families continue to choose Catholic schools for their children to begin formal education as a sign of their confidence in our schools." She said when a child was enrolled in a Catholic school it also meant that parents were being welcomed into the school and Church community. "We enrol the child and at the same time invite the family into the community and Church." Pictured with principal Kerry White, from left to right, are future students Ember Chau, Georgia Norman, Akash Wellington, Jennifer Nguyen and Jordan Deutrom. Photo: Stephen Gray Schools are a 'soft target'