Performing Arts Centre Official Opening



A special welcome to Dr Dennis Jensen  MP, Mr Tony McRae  MLA, Ms Pam Moss - District Director of the Fremantle Peel Education Office, Mr John Ispen  - President of P&C, Mr Tony Russell - Chairperson of School Council and PAC Building Committee, Staff, and Ladies and Gentlemen.


“Community” is a word that is exemplified by the people who make up Banksia Park Primary School.  In fact without the community and their total commitment to this Performing Arts Centre project we would not be here tonight.


The magnificent facility that you see around you is the culmination of many years and much fund raising.  In fact some years ago I clearly remember driving past the school and watching the money barometer (that was on the Beasley Road side of the school) slowly rise towards the goal amount and thinking about the commitment of the school community to attempt such a challenge as building a Performing Arts Centre.  Many Parents & Citizens Associations would not be able to even contemplate such a challenging project and this is even more commendable that you set a target (which continued to increase) and worked tirelessly to attain it.  My sincere congratulations to everyone.


The building itself has encountered a number of delays.  Building in a time of escalating cost and a shortage of tradespeople has complicated the whole process.  When I first met with Pat Pinkus (the previous Principal) in September last year she told me the whole thing would be complete by the time I took over in January.  I only came in towards the end of the project but (due to the delays) I have seen first hand the manner in which the community has worked to achieve their aim –  and the generous way in which you donate your time, effort, expertise and money.


This addition will be a fantastic asset to our school.  Not only do we have a magnificent new stage area but also a room where we can prepare for performances and where the bands can practise without wasting time having to continually set up and dismantle their equipment.  Also the Uniform Shop will have a new home (which is not in a classroom) so that it can be more efficient.  One of the side benefits is that the school has a real entry statement – which can only improve as nature takes it course and things continue to grow. The benefits to the school and the wider community are endless ! 


This is a night of celebration so my aim is to be brief - but a special word of recognition to Tony Russell (for his ongoing commitment to the project as its Chairperson) and also to the many people who organized and worked so hard to ensure the that tonight’s Official Gala Opening was a success.


Finally, on behalf of the school itself, I would like to thank the whole community for this wonderful facility.  I thank everyone - those present and those who could not attend – those with children currently in the school and those whose children departed before the building came to fruition, and other members of the community who never had children at Banksia Park but still supported the project – Thanks to everyone in the Banksia Park Primary School community who contributed in any way to our fantastic new Performing Arts Centre…..


Thank you !!!


Martin Humphreys