Staff and students at Isabella State School today celebrated the official opening of the school’s third stage of development.

Member for Mulgrave Curtis Pitt said the $4.9 million stage three would enable the school to cater for the fast-growing student enrolments.

“Isabella State School opened at the start of the 2007 school year with 142 students from Prep to Year 7 and in the last two years enrolments have more than tripled to reach 452.

“The student body is expected to top 550 within 12 months as the Edmonton area on the southside of Cairns is experiencing tremendous residential growth,” Mr Pitt said.

“Stage three includes eight new classrooms, a covered area with amenities, a music and technology centre, covered walkways and a staff car park. Its construction created 37 jobs.

“The school now has a total of 22 classrooms and employed seven additional teachers this year because of the increasing enrolments.

“Isabella State School has attracted an investment of more than $20 million in joint funding from the State and Federal Governments.

“The State Government invested $2.8 million towards stage three while the Federal Government contributed $2.1 million.

“The school is fully networked with internet access to all classrooms, interactive white boards, and students have access to laptops, a film and editing suite and skilled teachers who can maximise the benefits of the latest in learning technology.”

Mr Pitt said it was always satisfying to celebrate the opening of new facilities and to know what a difference they make for staff and students.

“This school demonstrates the State Government’s commitment to build a modern education system that equips students for a rewarding working life and a quest for lifelong learning,” Mr Pitt said.

The Member for Mulgrave unveiled a plaque at the school to mark the official opening of stage three.