‘Incredible start’ for new students

Published 9:05am 27 August 2020

‘Incredible start’ for new students
Words by Nick Crockford

Mango Hill State Secondary College has been officially opened with praise flowing from Queensland’s Deputy Premier for its students’ “maturity and resilience”.

Foundation students first walked into the $64 million stage one buildings at the start of this year – and just eight weeks later COVID-19 arrived.

Suddenly the college’s prepared and planned learning paths had to change, students had to switch to online lessons and teachers had to find ways to adapt.

Deputy Premier Steven Miles, the State Member for Murrumba, says it was an “incredible start”, which students handled with “maturity and resilience. We are all so proud of them.”

Foundation Principal Michael Rogers agreed: “We started the year really well. The first day was my proudest moment, seeing students arrive in their uniforms, teachers happy and smiling.

“Then we had to put the brakes on everything.”

Massive challenge

“The challenge of online learning in a new school, where teachers were constantly creating things was massive. We were writing curriculum pretty much all the time,” Mr Rogers explained.

“But our teachers did a fantastic job and I think we’ve come out the other side really well. I was so proud of our students today, how they carried themselves and represented the college.

“Our vision is to create a community of Respectful, Engaged and Aspiring Learners (REAL) for the world of tomorrow.”

Mango Hill State Secondary College has 50 staff and 245 students and construction of stage one supported about 200 local jobs.

Education Minister Grace Grace, who helped officially open the college, said the new school was built on time, on budget – and building stage two was now out to tender.

Supporting jobs

“This state-of-the-art secondary college has a range of different facilities that students and staff love,” said Minister Grace, “now we are getting on with building stage two which will support even more jobs.”

This will include a senior science technology engineering and mathematics (STEM) centre; food and hospitality, art and design and performing arts centres as well as more classrooms.

A new 525m, $350,000 pathway will also be built for students walking or riding to the college, says Moreton Bay Regional Council Mayor Peter Flannery.

“I would like to thank the State Government for the Works for Queensland funding and particularly the advocacy of Deputy Premier Steven Miles for the missing pathway link along Kinsellas Road East,” Mayor Peter Flannery said.

Building blocks

While in the region, Education Minister Grace and Deputy Premier Miles also visited Griffin State School to officially open its $19.8 million extension.
The Deputy Premier recounted his first conversation with Minister Grace on the need to expand. The Minister asked: “How many rooms? Two? Four?” The response was 27!
The expansion includes a two-storey, 14 classroom teaching block space for digital and technology learning and outdoor learning spaces; a two-storey, 12 classroom block; a new Prep to Year 1 block, play areas and the SS Griffin playground ship.
“This school started in 2016 with around 240 students and is now thriving with the community to back it up, with more than 940 enrolled,” the Deputy Premier said.
“Today we’ve officially opened three new buildings to ensure our children have the best possible learning opportunities.”

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