SEE: Innovative new school for Ballina
CONSTRUCTION of the new $50 million Ballina Coast High School is ready to get under way but teachers aren't waiting to implement the unique new learning curriculum.
Minister for Education Rob Stokes visited the site yesterday and said the school would feature the latest technology and innovative classroom design.
"This will be leading the way in terms of school design and the way that schools work to serve the needs of student population and wider population in a way we've never seen before,” Mr Stokes said.
The new school is designed to cater for 1000 students, with the option of constructionally expanding in the future.
Most of the existing classroom blocks have been demolished, making room for new state-of-the-art learning spaces, including an aquaculture and agriculture building and sports courts.
Ballina Coast High School principal Janeen Silcock radiated excitement for the new building but said collaborative learning was already under way.
"Every student that comes into our school will have an individualised learning plan attached to a learning coach,” Ms Silcock said.
There will be one staff member to 15 students, who will map them through their schooling life from Years 7-12.
"We want to plan for them to dream about their future.
"Our students in Year 7 are doing things way beyond our expectations in terms of their learning. They were completing a 10-week unit of work within five weeks.”
Students have more freedom of choice about the subjects they want to learn and there is no lack of choices, from English and drama to engineering and drones.
There will be 47 on-site car parks and 29 formal off-site spaces created along Martin St by the time the school is completed in early 2019.
The minister also visited Lennox Head and Byron Bay Public Schools, which are funded under a $4.2 billion package over four years as part of the 2017-18 NSW budget.
Both schools also look forward to major upgrades and will submit development applications shortly.