Jul 15, 2016

Students left in limbo as SCA prepares to close

Hundreds of students at the Sydney College of the Arts (SCA) in Rozelle have been left in limbo, following the University of Sydney’s decision to close the campus.

The proposed closure will see SCA students transferred to UNSW Art and Design from Semester 1 2017.

Today I will address a vigil at the Art Gallery of New South Wales in support of students and staff.

This follows a meeting I held recently with students enrolled at the SCA who outlined their concerns over the closure, which included a lack of consultation and information about which campus they will attend at UNSW.

I’m concerned about the impact this will have on our local community.

Businesses in my electorate on Balmain Road and Darling Street will lose customers as several hundred staff and students are transferred from the area.

I’m also concerned that culturally and socially we will all lose out because of this decision.

The best communities encourage diversity and cherish all types of talent.

Here in the inner west we have benefited enormously from the presence of the SCA as part of our vibrant arts community.

Furthermore, the Callan Park Master Plan is predicated on the SCA being located within Callan Park as anchor tenant, with complimentary artistic and cultural organisations to be allocated premises nearby.

The failure of the NSW Government to implement the Callan Park Master Plan has undermined the potential to progress Callan Park as an arts precinct. 

The NSW Government must outline what will happen to the heritage listed buildings at Callan Park, should this closure go ahead.