The region is prepared for next week’s influx of leavers as Year 12s across WA begin their annual celebrations.
The Make it Happen Group, comprising staff from the council, Margaret River police, Margaret River Hospital and volunteers, has finalised their plan for leavers week, which would see about 200 ‘‘schoolies’’ arrive in the area.
Shire president Ray Colyer said the group would focus on harm minimisation during the week, which runs officially from November 23-26.
‘‘Keeping young people safe while allowing them to celebrate in a way that has minimal impact on the local community is our key focus,’’ Cr Colyer said.
‘‘The strong community partnerships fostered by the Make it Happen Group really indicates a shift in the way our community perceives and manages leavers week.
Young people can have a good time without imposing on the community.’’
Prevelly Park Beach Resort operator Greg Home said he expected a sharp decline in the number of leavers celebrating in the Margaret River region.
‘‘A lot of people curse leavers, but they bring a lot of money to the town,’’ he said.
‘‘I’ve only booked in 150 kids to date—that’s 100 per cent down on the last couple of years.’’
Despite the drop off, police Sergeant Paul Daly said his officers would focus on leavers staying in private accommodation.
‘‘Residents are encouraged to report any disturbances in their neighborhood during the week,’’ he said.
More than 100 extra police officers were expected to flood the South West and Margaret River during leavers week.