A thank you published as an Ad in The West Australian at 17th June.
The Perth Modernian Society Inc, representing the alumni and former teachers of Perth Modern School, welcomes the announcement on 13 June 2017 by the Premier Hon Mark McGowan and Ministers Hon Sue Ellery and Hon Rita Saffi oti that Perth Modern School is to remain on its existing heritage site in Subiaco as Western Australia’s only fully selective academic government school.
We are grateful that the McGowan Government has decided not to change Perth Mod’s role and that this decision has been managed in a respectful and timely manner. It is very rare for any government to reconsider an election policy and the McGowan Government’s decision to change the Education Central policy after a preparedness to listen to the community’s concerns, is gratefully recognised and we thank them. This school has an international reputation for excellence and this decision is resonating very widely.
Perth Mod opened to students in 1911 and was to pioneer a modern education where the sciences and modern languages were to be on an equal footing with classical education. In 1912, the school introduced entrance examinations in response to the high demand for places. In 1959 Perth Mod lost its selective entry status and this was not restored until 2007. In 2017 Perth Mod’s supporters stood up to be counted, and were heard. We recognise and thank YOU for all your magnificent efforts.
The parents of the existing 1300+ Perth Mod students were concerned about maintaining continuity of quality education for their children. Alumni and others involved in preserving Perth Mod were concerned about its heritage and outstanding record for producing students who excelled in many fi elds of endeavour of national and international significance. But more broadly there was a groundswell of people who wanted to support the history and heritage of the first Government co-educational senior secondary school in Western Australia.
‘Save Perth Mod’ became a very public cause, and the Society extends its profound thanks to everyone who supported Mod in its hour of need. They wrote a never-ending stream of Letters to the Editor, and they very willingly signed our petitions – in fact over 10,000 persons did so from Port Hedland in the north to Albany in the south. This reinforces our view that Perth Modern School has earned the unique position of being held in the highest regard across Australia as a school which is merit based and provides students regardless of their family background or personal circumstances with the highest quality public school education to allow them to achieve their potential.
14,000 Modernians across Australia and around the world commend the McGowan Government for having listened to concerns about the ‘Education Central’ proposal and taken the widespread community feedback into account in developing a revised direction that leaves intact the wonderful institution that is so well recognised that it is fondly called ‘Perth Mod’ or just ‘Mod’.
The Perth Modernian Society also thanks the many Members of Parliament from all sides, and City of Subiaco Councillors, who listened to the students, their parents, the P&C Association, the Perth Modern School Board, and Modernians and the general public. We are eternally grateful to the journalists and editors of the print and electronic media who saw it as their professional responsibility to shine a light on the issues about which the Perth Mod stakeholders were so concerned.
The McGowan Government’s welcome announcement to save Perth Mod was not only an important victory for democracy, but importantly, allows Perth Mod to continue its tradition of exemplary education for high-achieving students, who come from all corners of this State to be educated in a Government school which is open to all students regardless of circumstances. It also means that the valuable support services that the Perth Modernian Society and the Sphinx Scholarship Fund provide to Perth Mod will continue stronger than ever, for the benefit of our state, our nation and the global community.
The Society records it’s thanks to the public and the State Government most sincerely. We look forward to supporting the Government in the pursuit of quality public education in WA.
May I encourage and welcome all former students and staff who are not already registered to join the Perth Modernian Society.
Peter Farr, President
c/o Perth Modern School, 90 Roberts Rd,
Subiaco, Western Australia 6008
Enquiries: Telephone: (08) 6189 3690