While you would normally expect a school to be quiet over the Christmas holiday period, this was far from the case at Shire Christian this year. A team of builders, carpenters, electricians and alike, with the support of the school maintenance team, was hard at work to complete a number of renovation projects in time for students to return in January.

Both Secondary School art rooms were given a complete makeover, transforming them to fresh spaces that will be an engaging learning environment for many years to come. The Junior Art Room was also renovated and relocated to make way for an extra Kindergarten class in the Junior School.

Head of Visual Arts, Mrs Libby Jackson, said that the newly renovated art rooms were amazing.

"The overall layout, storage spaces and cupboards, furniture and colour scheme has made the rooms a truly pleasant workable space for students to learn in," she said.

Renovation work has also begun in the hall, which will substantially improve lighting, ventilation, access and acoustics. As part of the project tiered retractable seating will be installed. This substantial upgrade will benefit the growing sports and live production needs of the school. It is expected that the newly renovated hall will be ready for use in early Term 2.

School Principal, Mr Brett Hartley, said he was thankful for the members of the school community who, 40 years ago, invested a great deal of thought, time and effort into constructing the school.

“The buildings have served us well; however, over time it is important that we refresh and renovate our facilities to meet the contemporary needs of students,” he said.

“Over the last few years when I have taken school tours into our hall, several people have commented positively on it being a very large and functional space. However, the hall did get very hot in summer, the entrance was quite small and the acoustics needed to be improved.”

“I am thankful that the school had money set aside so that we could complete this important renovation,” said Mr Hartley.

Further renovations were completed in the Year 5 classrooms, with new paint and carpet fitted, and two new classrooms assembled on the old tennis court area to help relieve the space needs of the Secondary School.

Upon their return to school students and teachers were elated to find air-conditioning installed in all classrooms, finished just in time for one of the hottest starts to the year in a long time.

A member of teaching staff was heard to remark, "the air conditioning has made the classrooms much more comfortable and the students are better focussed, especially after lunch on a hot day. They settle more quickly and engage much better with the learning opportunities presented to them. It is worth noting that many students have also expressed their gratitude too...which is nice to hear."

The Secondary Library has also received a facelift in recent weeks, with a new colour scheme and better lighting installed to help students focus and learn in a creative environment.

Other changes to the campus over the break include new signage installed at the front of the school to help make visitors feel welcome, and a large map provided to help navigate the site.

The school continues to work hard to ensure that high quality facilities are accessible to all students so that they will have every opportunity to learn and thrive.