Multiple schools from across the Bundaberg Region are set to benefit from a $29 million boost for playground and tuckshop upgrades.
Set to share in almost $4.6 million of State Government funding, local schools include Bundaberg South State School, Bundaberg West State School, Childers State School, Gin Gin State High School, Gin Gin State School, Isis District State High School and Walkervale State School.
Bundaberg West State School will receive $500,000 for a new senior playground and Walkervale State School will receive almost $450,000 to install play equipment and a sports court.
Bundaberg Central State School received $331,516 to build a new tuckshop.
Expanding on the initial $20 million Eat right, Play right, Learn well initiative, which saw 60 schools receive funding, an extra $29 million was announced as part of the 2023-24 State Budget to ensure more schools could benefit from the popular program.
Through the program, schools were able to apply for funding of up to $500,000 to upgrade playgrounds, including to replace soft fall surfacing and install shade cover structures, and for tuckshops to purchase items such as catering appliances and equipment, install stainless steel benches and upgrade facilities.
The tuckshop and playground upgrade program prioritises funding schools in disadvantaged areas where these upgrades are needed most.
Bundaberg Central State School Principal Frank Nastasi said it was great news for the school and was very welcome.
“It will bring our tuckshop facilities into the heart of the school from their current location in G Block, which is out of the way for students, he said.
“On completion it will enable us to look at adding more tuckshop days a week from the current two, and to run on school events such as sports days which currently doesn’t happen due to its location.”
Minister for Education Grace Grace said the funding would ensure students had access to healthy and nutritious tuckshop meals and modern playground equipment.
“This hugely popular initiative is all about supporting the health and wellbeing of students,” she said.
“And, it has been so popular that the department is reviewing all remaining eligible applications and looking at how we can provide funding.
“So, if your school has made an application but hasn’t heard back yet, watch this space.”
Member for Bundaberg Tom Smith said it was fantastic to see schools, students and staff right across the region benefit from this popular program.
“We know how important playgrounds and tuckshops are to school life, and this funding is sure to have a positive impact on these school communities,” he said.
“If you add together the 15 schools successful in this round and the five schools that benefitted from the initial $20 million, over $6.3 million is being invested to upgrade playgrounds and tuckshops in Wide Bay alone.”
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