Bendigo Violet Street Primary School seeks new oval

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Bendigo Violet Street Primary School has several keen soccer players among its 180 students.

But you wouldn’t know it by looking at their outdoor playing areas, which don’t consist of an apparent soccer pitch.

In a letter, penned last week, he outlined the need for the “atrocious heap of dirt and dust that our school accepts as a soccer pitch or oval” to be upgraded.

Quotes obtained by the school for the necessary improvements – which include a set of goals, grass, and irrigation – amount to at least $45,000.

 Physical education teacher Steven Tooley said the oval’s condition had not dissuaded students from ‘having a go out there’ during recess and lunch times.

But he said the need for a cleaner and more playable surface was apparent.

“It would be great to see the students get a surface they can really enjoy,” Mr Tooley said.

He said an upgraded, multi-purpose sports oval would also add significant value to the physical education program for the whole school community.

Bendigo Violet Street Primary School principal Mandy Costello said she’d love to see the school with a brand new oval, but the cost of upgrading the facilities was prohibitive.

“Short of winning TattsLotto, I don’t know what else to do,” she said.

Mrs Costello said the school would be happy to partner with community organisations to make the project happen.

That’s an avenue Member for Bendigo Lisa Chesters said she had been exploring as she searched for suitable funding programs.

“There’s no dedicated [federal] funding stream for this kind of upgrade,” she said.

Ms Chesters said primary schools with fewer than 200 students were at a disadvantage when it came to expensive capital works projects.

“The school’s ability to fundraise is limited,” she said.

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