Fountain Gate Secondary College: Future Problem Solving

Ms GRALEY (Narre Warren South) — On 12 March 2013 I held a meeting with a group of dedicated students at Fountain Gate Secondary College, and I am pleased that they are in the house today to hear this members statement.

They are a part of an enhancement program designed to push academically advanced students to their limits in their thinking, creativity and people skills. The program is called Future Problem Solving. These students choose a relevant issue in their community that they are passionate about and utilise their academic skills to solve it.

The team at Fountain Gate Secondary College decided to tackle the issue of a lack of community spirit and pride. They believe that a lack of community pride has caused complications in the Narre Warren area such as vandalism, graffiti and robberies. Narre Warren is also a very multicultural area.

This is a positive aspect of the area, as residents of the area do not lose sight of their origins and many cultures are incorporated into the community, but there is some tension.

The students believe they can provide a solution by creating a feeling of belonging and oneness in the area and have decided that the best way to tackle this is by redesigning the symbol that represents their area.

The Narre Warren area is landmarked and represented by the fountain structure originally
designed by Robin Boyd in the 1960s. The fountain is a large metal structure that once used to be fully operational. Unfortunately some adolescents placed soap in the fountain, producing bubbles, which resulted in interference with traffic and caused a major road safety issue.

Not many people know about the fountain. The students’ plan is to have a stunning garden incorporating some of the Aboriginal heritage and the multicultural influences of the people who live there now. It is a great project, and the talented and enthusiastic students of Fountain Gate Secondary College deserve their community’s support.