New schools welcomed but other issues unaddressed

Aerial shot of undergoing construction for the Clyde Secondary School. Picture: SUPPLIED.

By Ethan Benedicto

Two new schools are set to open for Clyde North in the first school term of 2025, with interim names of Clyde North Primary and Secondary currently open for renaming by the general public.

Released by the State Government on 22 May, a survey was opened for two weeks to allow resident to nominate their preferred name for both schools with Aboriginal language names in an initiative for further Indigenous self-determination.

The schools themselves have been met with a positive reception from local Clyde North parents, with Nicole Jiggson, mother of three and resident for the last two years agreeing that they are a “very good addition to the suburb”.

“It’s very good and convenient for everyone, we don’t need to go anywhere else, [you] just drive through Clyde North and you’re there,” she said.

Both institutions received funding of roughly $573 million from the 2023-24 budget, with a further $948 million to deliver an additional 16 schools into 2026 announced in the 2024-25 budget.

With this most recent funding includes an additional two new schools, currently named Clyde Creek North Primary and Secondary schools.

The proposed names for the schools are Bill Bill, Woolepe and Parn Secondary College and Brungilo, Turrun and Yoke Primary School, with each name representing a different aspect of local flora and fauna.

Centre manager for Balla Balla community centre, Maree Cullinan said that she is “happy to hear that there are plans in place for new schools for the Clyde North area which is experiencing huge growth”.

“This will connect children and families at a local level and create connections, and a real sense of belonging,” she said.

Sasha Doolin, long-time local resident and mother of two is on the same page with Ms Jiggson and Ms Cullinan, agreeing that the schools are a boon for the local community.

“There are only two primary schools and a couple of high schools [here], and Clyde North is growing at a very, very rapid pace, so I think it would be good,” she said.

However, not every parent’s attention is centred on the schools, with long-standing issues surrounding Thompsons Road roundabout being a common problem with traffic and travel times.

When asked if new schools on the western side of the Berwick-Cranbourne Road would ease traffic, Vishal Vhatt said that “a few schools this side isn’t going to make a difference”.

“It’s the Thompsons Road roundabout, unless they remove it it’s still going to be putting a lot of pressure,” he said.

Previously interviewed by Star News, mother of two Lauren Ryan sees the schools as a welcome addition, and that “new schools are never a negative thing”.

“They’re fantastic, it takes the pressure off existing schools; Kambrya for example nearly has 2000 students, so you know there does need to be some more schools built,” she said.

A bigger issue that resonates with Mr Vhatt’s standing is Ms Ryan’s sentiment that the new schools are going to add to the current area’s congestion.

“I think it will make it worse because the roads aren’t fit for all the traffic unless some miracle is going to happen within the next six months.

“It’s not the schools; it’s the buses, the road infrastructure which are far below what it needs to be.

“I think it’ll ease the traffic in further out areas, but the immediate surroundings of Thompsons Road are going to be even more congested,” she said.

The current status of the Thompson Road and Berwick-Cranbourne Road intersection upgrades by the Big Build is stagnant, sitting at the process of seeking feedback on the upgrade’s scope and design, which was scheduled for early 2024.

Highlighted by Berwick MP Brad Battin in a previous article, the current roundabout upgrades received no specific updates from the latest budget, despite a current total of $121.4 million in estimated spending towards metropolitan road and intersection upgrades.

As for the new schools, consultation surveys close on Thursday 6 May; for more information visit