New school binds Fishermans Bend community

Published: 4 May 2022

Front side view of a building

Kasey Edwards always believed that Fishermans Bend would grow into a community that has it all.

This part of Port Melbourne was once an industrial hub. These days, it’s Australia’s largest urban renewal project and Kasey, a mum of two, is a long-time supporter of a school for the area.

A woman with ginger hair smiling“When my daughter Violet was in childcare, it was really clear that there wouldn’t be enough space at the existing high school in the area,” she said.

“We were looking at the growth of families in the area and thought, ‘Where are our children going to go?’.”

Fast-forward to 2022 and after local campaigning followed by an investment from the Victorian Government, the Port Melbourne Secondary College welcomed its founding year, including Kasey’s daughter Violet.

Kasey is confident the school will be a major draw card for families looking to relocate to the area. By 2050, it’s expected to be home to 80,000 people - up from just 3,000 today.

“I see families moving to the area to send their kids to the school and I’m certainly not going anywhere,” Kasey said.

As part of the Fishermans Bend urban renewal project, roads, transport and community facilities will be built. There are also plans for each resident to live within 200 metres of a park or open space.

Nowhere is this more important than in the ‘Wirraway’ neighbourhood that houses the secondary college. The Government’s vision is to transform it from an industrial business park into a “family-friendly neighbourhood close to the bay”.

“When I had my children, it was just amazing to see what was around me - the parks, the infrastructure and now this amazing school,” Kasey said.A woman wearing a skirt suit sitting on a bench smiling

“Schools are an important element of growing a new community because when families move, education is often an important deciding factor,” said the school’s principal Anne Stout.

With a focus on the STEAM subjects (science, technology, engineering, arts and maths), Port Melbourne Secondary College aligns well with the Victorian Government’s Fishermans Bend Innovation Precinct.

The government is investing $179.4 million into the first stage of works to transform the former General Motors Holden site over three years. The redevelopment will attract world-class companies and research institutes, plus startups and entrepreneurs.

“We have 3D printers and laser-cutters so the students are learning new industries and how to prepare for that kind of work which is exactly the kind of work Fishermans Bend will provide for them in the future,” Ms Stout said.

The school is also connecting with local community organisations including Port Melbourne Bowling Club and the Fishermans Bend Business Forum. It’s committed to helping make Fishermans Bend a place families will call home for decades to come.

Page last updated 04 May 2022
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