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Parents outraged after students caught with drugs allowed to stay at school

Liam Bartlett
Article image for Parents outraged after students caught with drugs allowed to stay at school

Parents from the Western Australian College of Agriculture in Cunderdin have expressed their anger after a decision to expel two students from the school’s boarding house was reversed.

Four students were allegedly found in possession of illicit drugs on campus, prompting the board and principal to ban them from boarding, and only allow them to attend as day-students.

But the education department overruled the decision during an appeals process, allowing two of the students to return.

Concerned father Josh Brooks told Liam Bartlett allowing the students to return will provide an “unsafe working environment” for other students.

“These are kids, they are young adults, they are operating heavy machinery and are in a small residential confinement and that is the last thing you want in that environment,” he said.

“The message that is sent now is that there is no repercussions or no consequences of this.”

Press PLAY to hear why parents are concerned

Nationals Leader Mia Davies has requested an urgent briefing from the Education Minister after several concerned parents contacted her about the decision.

“I have reached out to the Ministers office to get a briefing just to understand how that can happen, how the department can override a decision that is made by an independent public school.”

Press PLAY to hear the full interview 

Director general of the Education Department, Lisa Rogers, said the parents were entitled to have the decision reviewed through the appeals process.

“What it meant for these two boys was that not only could they not have access to the residential facility, but because of that they did not have any alternative living arrangements,” she said.

“When the director of education spoke to those two boys they were incredibly remorseful, they made a very poor decision and they are very aware of that.”

She said the children will be under a “high degree of scrutiny” going forward.

“They are in year 12, and these boys have two terms left of their education.

“They have made a bad decision … we need to make sure that those decisions don’t impact what has been a successful school career.”

Press PLAY to hear the decision explained in full

(Photo: WA College of Agriculture – Cunderdin/ Facebook.) 

Liam Bartlett