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    Three Lutheran schools in the Wimmera will merge under one leadership structure starting in 2025. FILE PHOTO.

Wimmera Lutheran schools amalgamation announced

By Lauren Henry

Three Lutheran schools in the Wimmera will merge under one leadership structure starting in 2025.

Horsham’s Holy Trinity Lutheran College, Dimboola’s St Peter’s Lutheran School and Nhill Lutheran School will merge to form Wimmera Lutheran College.

Under the new school structure, all schools will share resources, streamline administration and compliance requirements, and deliver greater access to resources and opportunities for students and staff.

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A new overarching executive principal will support each school’s own school leader, with each school to maintain its own identity.

An amalgamation team with representatives from each school has been working together to finalise the establishment of a single board that will govern the three schools.

The Nhill and Dimboola schools provide primary education to 58 and 27 students respectively, while the Horsham school caters to 587 students from foundation to year 12. The three schools collectively have  more than 100 staff.

Lutheran Education Victoria NSW Tasmania executive director Colin Minke said all three schools had been working collaboratively for ‘some time now’ so the amalgamation was a natural progression of the existing relationship.

“This is an opportunity to better cater for the educational needs of our students and increase efficiency by sharing resources,” he said.

“With increasing compliance measures and expectations in the administration of a school, streamlining some of these areas means there is better use of resources and time. 

“We don’t envisage challenges for students and families and are committed to making it a smooth transition.”

When asked about whether the names or the uniforms of each school would change, Mr Minke said it would be a matter for the new board to decide.

“But each site will continue to have its own identity based on its location and history. We don’t expect there to be any changes to uniform in 2025,” he said.

“Our priority right now is helping our school communities understand and adjust to the new amalgamated school model.”

Mr Minke said regular updates would be communicated to staff, parents and the wider school community as the new structure was finalised in coming months.

Nhill Lutheran School principal Damon Prenzler said his school was excited about the resources a merger could provide students, and the leadership and professional development opportunities for staff. “Our schools share the same Lutheran values and commitment to educational excellence, so it feels like the right fit for us to continue to work together,” he said.

Holy Trinity acting principal Jason Przibilla said the amalgamation was about leveraging strengths from all three schools to form a stronger educational platform.

“We already share resources across areas like business management, finances, maintenance and some specialist staff, but there are other areas where we can improve efficiencies and ensure that our main focus is on educational outcomes for our students,” he said.

The entire March 27, 2024 edition of The Weekly Advertiser is available online. READ IT HERE!

The entire March 27, 2024 edition of AgLife is available online. READ IT HERE!