Persistent threads of concern about the ongoing operational viability of Newstead College have been running as an undercurrent since March.
Declining student numbers were the major cause of concern, as raised first by Legislative Council member Ivan Dean, in Parliament. Since then, a Question on Notice, taken by Education Minister Jeremy Rockliff during budget estimates has revealed the embattled school is also losing teachers.
Newstead College is one of only two standalone colleges in Launceston, but it is clear that Launceston College has the lion's share of courses and enrolments.
However, since the news broke of the potential viability concerns at Newstead College, the school has been inundated with messages of support and well wishes.
Former students and teachers have fondly recalled their memories of the school and others have talked of their own childrens' plans to head to Newstead because of the courses on offer. Newstead College clearly has the hearts of those who have at some time, past or present, have been part of the school communities.
Schools play a formative role in the lives of the students, but they also have an impact on a wider region.
It remains to be seen if Newstead College will have deeper viability concerns as time moves on and more of its feeder schools extend to years 11 and 12.
However, there is one thing to keep in mind, as of next year, it will be law that all child stays in school until they are aged 18. So, hopefully, that will make an impact on student numbers.
In addition, colleges will need to evolve, to make sure they create deeper partnerships with their existing feeders schools and create vibrant and enticing campuses that offer popular and interesting courses to entice students to leave their high schools.
Some students might take the easy route and stay at their high schools but others may relish the opportunity to head somewhere new and shake off the shackles of their childhood as they move into young adulthood.