Opposition Leader Mark McGowan targeted two suburban Perth seats yesterday with a $54 million promise to build a second high school in Ellenbrook if Labor wins the March State election.
The Government plans to start building a second high school in 2015-16 but Labor says it will open one in 2015 if it wins.
Mr McGowan said there would be plenty of demand for the new school, to be called North Ellenbrook Secondary College, pointing to Health Department figures that show 50 babies are born per week in Ellenbrook and five surrounding suburbs.
"In 2008, Ellenbrook Secondary College had 550 students, which increased to 1281 students last year," he said. "With primary school enrolments at high levels, a second high school in Ellenbrook is urgently required."
While it would technically be built in the West Swan electorate, held by Labor MLA Rita Saffioti by a notional margin of 4.1 per cent, the Opposition expects most students will come from the Swan Hills electorate, held by Liberal MLA Frank Alban by a notional margin of 3.5 per cent.
Both parties believe their candidates have a good chance of winning the seats.
Treasurer Troy Buswell said yesterday the Liberal Government had provided a cost estimate for the school in the May Budget - also $54 million.
"So if the sum total of your election commitments is to run around the countryside announcing things that are already in the Budget, well, good luck to you," Mr Buswell said.
The Government has committed $500,000 to start work in 2015-2016.
People in the north-eastern suburb were disappointed when the Barnett Government abandoned a 2008 election pledge to build a rail line to Ellenbrook after modelling showed passenger numbers would not justify the cost.
Mr McGowan said Labor remained committed to delivering a rail line to Ellenbrook under Metronet, the Opposition's city-wide rail plan.He would not give a timeframe for the Ellenbrook link but said it would be a priority.
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