The NSW Government today announced the first schools to receive air conditioning under its Cooler Classrooms program, with two schools in Heathcote set to benefit.
I’m pleased Bundeena Public School and Engadine West Public School will benefit from the Cooler Classrooms Fund. This is part of the Government’s continued commitment to providing environments where our students and teachers can best succeed.
Premier Gladys Berejiklian and Education Minister Rob Stokes said more than 900 schools would be the first to receive funding under the NSW Liberals & Nationals Government’s record $500 million program – the largest investment of its kind in NSW history.
Schools in areas like Penrith, Camden, and Dubbo – that have an average maximum January temperature of 30 degrees or more – will now automatically receive air conditioning in their classrooms and libraries, while all other schools can apply for funding under the Cooler Classrooms Fund on a needs basis. Previously only schools with an average maximum January temperature of 33 degrees or more were air conditioned.
The first round of applications took place throughout Term 3 this year. A second round will open in the new year.
Mr Stokes said, unlike Labor’s plans, the NSW Liberals & Nationals’ Cooler Classrooms program was both economically and environmentally sustainable.
“We’re installing solar panels and ‘smart systems’ alongside the air conditioning units, so schools can offset their additional energy use and efficiently heat and cool their schools,” he said.
In addition to the hundreds of schools benefiting under the Cooler Classrooms program, air conditioning will be delivered in all new and upgraded schools under the Government’s record $6 billion school building program over the next four years.
“Every one of our 170 new and upgraded schools, including more than 2000 new classrooms, will also receive the new sustainable air conditioning systems,” Mr Stokes said.
School principals are encouraged to apply to the second round of the Fund, which will open on Day 1 of Term 1 next year. More information can be found at www.schoolinfrastructure.nsw.gov.au.