Hands on Learning is growing in the south-west with six new schools joining the program in 2019.
With 17 participating schools, the region will have the most schools in the 20-year-old program that is designed to increase school attendance through students undertaking hands on projects in their communities.
Hands on Learning Founder Russell Kerr was at Tower Hill yesterday and said it was amazing to see the growth of program in the south-west.
“Fantastic to see it kicking on down here like that in such a short space of time,” he said.
Consisting of 20 students, years 7-9, Warrnambool College’s Hands on Learning class have unveiled their recent project at Tower Hill.
They made five picnic tables and seats over the past 12 weeks, with financial support from the South West Community Foundation.
Warrnambool College Year 9 student Kelly Tokona has been involved in the program for two years and said she’s enjoyed it.
“You make new friends everyday,” she said.
Local Hands on Learning school support manager, Leon Carey, said students at Warrnambool College are getting satisfaction from the program.
“They appreciate what they can do,” he said.
Member for Western Victoria, James Purcell said it’s an important program that needs to keep growing.
“We need to develop the program in Western Victoria and we need to get it into every school,” he said.
Local member for the South West Coast, Roma Britnell was impressed by the students’ work and said practically-skilled jobs have been undervalued for a long time.
“This program has always made complete sense to me. We need to make sure we value everyone’s abilities,” she said.