Room to grow: St Catherine’s opens stage 2, plans stage 3
THE second stage of St Catherine of Siena Catholic Primary School has been officially opened, and the school is already anticipating the need for a now-funded third stage.
The Armstrong Creek school, which opened less than two years ago, received $4.9 million from the Andrews Government to build the second stage of their school, with extra classrooms, learning spaces and amenities next to the existing school, including a bridge linking the two buildings.
Stage two was opened on Friday last week, the same day the Morrison Government announced the school would receive $3 million to build a Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) facility with nine general learning areas as well as student and staff amenities.
St Catherine’s principal Donna Bryce said the funding to support stage two was welcome, as numbers at the school grew surprisingly quickly once it opened and spaces in stage one became heavily used.
“We will outgrow this building, stage two, by the end of 2022, so we’ll have to get some portables for 2023 until stage three is completed.
“It’s a growth area – you can see it around you – it’s a lovely community, and it’s growing.”
Assistant principal Allison Wedding said stage two had been designed to retain the look and feel of stage one.
“I think there’s a really big focus on the connection between indoor and outdoor learning as well; that’s been considered carefully.
“There are outdoor learning spaces as well, with windows on the ground floor opening up.”
The $4.9 million in state funding was provided through the Victorian Government’s Non-Government Schools Capital Fund, which delivers new schools, increases capacity and provides modern facilities, as well as supports the removal of asbestos and unsafe cladding.
“Every student in South Barwon deserves access to great school facilities and with more than a third of Victorian students attending non-government schools they’ll be sharing in our record investment,” South Barwon Labor MP Darren Cheeseman said.
“We’re delivering record funding across both government and independent schools to make sure all kids get the best facilities and we continue to build the Education state.”
Victorian Liberal Senator Sarah Henderson congratulated St Catherine’s for its successful application to the Capital Grants Program.
“I am delighted that students and staff at St Catherine of Siena Catholic Primary School are set to benefit from exciting new STEM facilities which will really revolutionise the learning environment for so many young people from this area,” she said.
“St Catherine of Siena Catholic Primary School has a wonderful school community, and these new facilities will further enhance the learning environment.”