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Thursday, 13 September 2018
Page: 40


Mr CREWTHER (Dunkley) (13:37): Nepean School, located in Seaford in my electorate, is a specialist school for students in my electorate aged between five and 18 years with a physical disability and/or complex health impairment or other disability. Devastatingly, very recently, a group of vandals entered the school and set fire to a tepee located in the playground, causing $12,000 worth of damage. The tepee is used as a central gathering place for students and was completely destroyed by the fire. The kids, the school community are the wider community are absolutely devastated by what occurred. Principal Carolyn Gurrier-Jones said in a news article:

Some of the students have said, 'Why would people pick on kids like us?' Those are the sentiments. The community feels sad because it was such a central part of the playground and it also impacts the kids capacity to feel safe going forward.

The Nepean School community raised the $12,000 to purchase the tepee back in 2013. This is not the first time the school has been targeted by vandals. In 2016, the tepee was stolen and damaged and then handed back to police.

It saddens me that a school like Nepean School, which does so much to support the children with a disability in Dunkley, would be targeted in this way. That why, in partnership with Frankston Community Noticeboard, I've set up a GoFundMe page to raise funds to replace their tepee at Nepean School. People who want to donate can go to our Facebook pages or go directly to gofundme.com/teepee4nepean and donate to this important cause.