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We were also grateful to have a chance to talk to the

Those that had to stay in town sometimes felt so far away,

The upheaval really made people think about what they

attendees from Yarloop. They had come from a far worse

so the emails and text messages were really needed. It

wanted for the town and their own future. It is very easy for

position than what we were in – with the complete loss of

was completely understandable - the school itself is a

small rural towns like Scaddan to disappear, particularly

the school and the inability to return for 12 months – we

large tie in the community, linking every generation.

after the loss or damage of much of the infrastructure the

were very lucky to only have to spend 3 weeks away from our school.

townsite offers. During the entire period, the kids were incredibly resilient. They went by bus into town everyday, got split up and

This made the community think long and hard about

During those three weeks, we were very well supported.

went to schools they had never been to. The greatest

what they wanted. It’s made us all appreciate how much

Ken Perris, the Department of Education Goldfields

worry for parents are their children, so knowing that the

we value what the town and community give.

Regional Director, along with Department of Education

kids were ok was a huge relief.

Esperance Regional Coordinator Paul Mather, were

Not every town has that opportunity, but Scaddan faced

invaluable. They, with the community alongside, really

Going back to the school after the fire, it was quite

fought for the re-opening of Scaddan Primary, allowing

confronting to see the grounds so bare. The kids however,

the students to return to some normalcy. The school bus

didn’t seem too worried by it and were so happy to

contractors were also fantastic, making room for bus

return. Our teachers were incredible. It was the end of the

flexibility so students could be picked up and dropped

school year and during all of this they were trying to write

off at alternative points. Knowing how government

school reports, practice an end of year concert and still

departments can work and how difficult it can be to make

teach a full program! At one stage, the whole school was

change, I think people really went above and beyond

housed in one old art room at a primary school in town.

it and has done it well.

what was expected. The fire also forced us to implement a detailed bushfire In the weeks that followed the fire, there was a lot of

plan. At the time we didn’t have anything relevant and

liaising with departments and we needed to keep parents

afterwards there were just so many things that we wanted

updated with what was going on. Group text messages

to get right. We have now set in place a comprehensive

and emails meant that most mornings started with texting

plan, which is very specific and tailored to our school’s

the latest developments. Ken Perris was amazing,

requirements. A half day meeting with DFES allowed us

answering calls from 6.30am to 8pm at night. Being busy

to provide feedback that will hopefully assist fire safety

was good though.

for other regional schools.

NATAHNA STONE | pg 85

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Our Bushfire Recovery Story  

"Our Bushfire Recovery Story" is a memoir of community strength & resilience. As part of the Recover, Rejuvenate, Restore Project, an invita...

Our Bushfire Recovery Story  

"Our Bushfire Recovery Story" is a memoir of community strength & resilience. As part of the Recover, Rejuvenate, Restore Project, an invita...