As part of the Inclusive Schools Fund, schools across Victoria will share in funding to build all-access play areas, sensory gardens and outdoor learning areas to support students with disabilities and additional needs.
Victorian Minister for Education, James Merlino, announced the Victorian Government would inject an additional $10 million into projects at 53 schools across the state, as part of the Inclusive Schools Fund.
“This funding is about giving every child the best chance to meet their potential – regardless of their background or circumstances,” said Minister Merlino.
Among those schools is Mt Waverly North Primary School, which will receive $200,000 to create an inclusive outdoor accessible play space that will transform a concreted area into a covered area with synthetic grass to facilitate a wide-range of sports.
“Disability doesn’t need to be a barrier to learning and achieving – these innovative projects are all about giving primary schools in my community and across the state the infrastructure they need to inspire a passion for learning,” said Member for Mount Waverly, Matt Fregon.
South Gippsland Specialist School is another one of the schools receiving a $200,000 grant. The school will use this to build an accessible playground that includes a swing, agility course, sand area, play hut, tunnels, ladders and water play area. The playground will also have rubber matting to create a smooth surface, helping students with mobility issues to easily access all areas.
“This is great news for South Gippsland students, who will get the benefits of new inclusive spaces to cater for a wider range of options for teaching and learning,” added Parliamentary Secretary for Schools Tim Richardson.
The 53 schools receiving funding will be using it in various ways, including accessible kitchen gardens, wheelchair-friendly playground surfaces, quiet musical areas, a bush playground and sensory zones with a range of tactile surfaces.
This latest announcement is the fifth round of grants to be offered under the $40 million Inclusive Schools Fund, which was established in 2015. Since then, over 232 creative projects to build inclusive learning spaces, outdoor sensory areas and accessible playgrounds have been announced.