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Thursday, 18 August 2011
Page: 8640


Mr SIMPKINS (Cowan) (10:21): I take the opportunity today to talk about the visit to the parliament on Tuesday by students from Woodvale Secondary College. We know that there is a lot of effort and cost involved for schools to come to Canberra, particularly for those who come from the outer areas of Australia, and Perth in particular. It is not undertaken lightly. There are a number of schools that are committed to taking the opportunity for the education of their students. Woodvale Secondary College, once known as Woodvale Senior High School, is one of the schools that has a good record in making their way to Canberra for the educational opportunity.

On Tuesday it was good to be able to welcome the school to the parliament and to move around with them as they engaged with the great Parliamentary Education Office's role-play scenario. I thank the Parliamentary Education Office for that. They were also guided through the Senate and the House of Representatives. During the parliamentary role-play I took the opportunity to say to Sheryl Hudson, the leading teacher of the tour, that we could look behind the scenes in the House of Representatives if she wanted to. She asked students who was interested in progressing past year 10 to study politics and a number of students put their hands up. It was good to be able to take them around and show them some of the things that the ordinary person does not get to see when they visit Canberra.

Very quickly I will name the students: Connor Bates, Natalie Travis, Connor Mallis, Katelyn Cole, Alex Kelly, Triahna Coombs, Rebecca Davenport, Lauren Turnbull, Rachel Newton, James Carr, Louise Counsel, Hetsvi Patel, Grace Holloway, Gemma Bailey, Albert Arulnamby and Jocelyn Bishop. As I said, it was good to be able to engage with these year 10 students, listen to the questions they had and help them with their enhanced study here in Canberra and their movement around Parliament House. I included the great decor of the basement, as it is one of the things that not many people get to see, or would want to see, but at least they had that as well. It was a great effort by the Woodvale Secondary College, and I thank the students for their interest in our great country.

The DEPUTY SPEAKER ( Hon. Peter Slipper ): Did the honourable member show the students what used to be the cells downstairs?