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Wednesday, 13 September 2017
Page: 10237

Ms McGOWAN (Indi) (13:43): Colleagues, can you join me in welcoming to parliament the representatives of Beechworth Secondary College Student Representative Council?

Honourable members: Hear, hear!

Ms McGOWAN: It's great to have you here. To teachers Storme and Kelly and to Owen, Madelaine, Wajiha, Sarwar, Annika, Madison, Liam, Tayla and Lloyd: I'm so pleased to have you here and acknowledge your leadership in our community. You represent so much of what's good about my electorate of Indi. Colleagues, over lunch these students have told me some of the things they love about their school. They have been involved in a solar challenge in Albury. They've entered a team in the Brave Hearts dragon boat race. The senior boys' hockey team went to the state final. The under-14 footy team, Beechworth Bushrangers, won the local footy competition. Asha Bright, from year 7, and Indigo Walker-Stelling, from year 9, entered the battle of the bands and made the state final in Melbourne. There were 90 bands in the competition. One song performed and written by Asha was judged best original song—a huge achievement for a country school.

Over lunch the students told me that what they love about their school are the teachers and the opportunity to work in their community to deliver meals on wheels. I am so proud to say that these young people are now involved in lobbying the Victorian government to lower the standard age for probationary licences to 17 so that we can work across the border with New South Wales to make sure our kids can access jobs. Welcome, everybody. (Time expired)