Autism Queensland receives $1.3 million for Sunnybank school refurbishment
Queensland’s first ever autism-specific school, which opened at Sunnybank Hills in 1977, is set for a $1.3 million refurbishment thanks to funding from the Queensland Independent Schools Block Grant Authority, State Capital Assistance Scheme - 2018 round.
Autism Queensland received official notification last week that it will receive funding for three projects to refurbish the original buildings at its Sunnybank Hills campus that were built in 1976.
The first project, work on which will commence this week, is refurbishment and conversion of the amenities block to a Prep General Learning Area (GLA), including a classroom, quiet spaces, amenities, a covered drop-off area and acoustic perimeter fencing.
Other projects include the refurbishment of the administration building and conversion of the Junior school building to six GLAs, six withdrawal rooms, amenities, an HPE gym area and other facilities.
Autism Queensland CEO Rod Cameron thanked the Queensland Government for their ongoing and valued support.
“Autism Queensland has run an autism-specific school in Brisbane for over 50 years since opening its first school in Spring Hill in 1967,” he said.
“The Sunnybank Hills autism-specific school was officially opened in July 1977 by Senator the Honourable Margaret Guilfoyle, Minister for Social Security.
“Our Sunnybank campus is one of only three accredited, independent schools in Queensland providing specialist education and therapy programs for students with a diagnosis of ASD aged five years (Prep) to 18 years.
“Full-time and part-time placements are available at the school and students are grouped according to age, ability and needs with a maximum of six per class.
“Each class is led by a teacher and at least one teacher aide with additional support provided by allied health professionals, including speech pathologists, occupational therapists and behaviour specialists.
“Our educational approach focuses on the development of core characteristics of autism, such as social skills, communication and sensory processing, behaviour, stress management and daily living, play and recreation skills.
“The success and growth that the school continues to enjoy would not have been possible without the continued support from the Queensland Department of Education,” Mr Cameron said.
Duncan Pegg, Member for Stretton said that this funding will help to ensure that students at Autism Queensland Sunnybank Hills have access to the best possible school facilities.
“The Palaszczuk Government remains committed to supporting non-state schools like Autism Queensland, and I’m pleased that they have received this much-needed assistance,” Mr Pegg said.
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