Central Victorian Schools Receive Federal Funding

Federal Member for Bendigo, Lisa Chesters has visited St Therese’s Primary School in Kennington to announce their success in receiving $9,293 in federal funding.

The school is one of 15 across the Bendigo electorate to receive a share of $200,000 through the Local Schools Community Fund.

Eligible projects included a broad range of small scale capital and non-capital initiatives from playground equipment and computer facilities, to measures targeting student wellbeing and mental health ranging from $1,000 to $20,000.

St Therese’s Primary School Principal, Matthew Mann said the funding will be used to create a synthetic turf play space.

“An old run down portable classroom was removed last October and the site has remained barren and dangerous for the students to play on since then,” Mann said.  

“Our student population is steadily growing and with more than 500 students, playground space is at a premium.

“It is heartbreaking to see a playground area closed off to students by construction fencing so this grant will certainly help the school turn this ‘no go zone’ into a fun and active space.

“Without this funding, the project would have been years away.”

Chesters said although it’s great to see $200,000 split across a number of schools, there were many important projects that missed out.

“Local applications for this fund totalled $905,365, far exceeding the $200,000 available.

“It’s disappointing that an electorate the size of Bendigo, with almost 90 schools and campuses, received the same amount of funding as McPherson which has just 31 schools or North Sydney which has 44,” Chesters said.

“Throughout the process it was evident that many schools sought assistance for similar projects, highlighting funding gaps in the current education model.

“I have written to the Education Minister, Dan Tehan to request further funding for schools in our region.”

TUESDAY 18 FEBRUARY 2020