| Geoff Helisma
Clarence MP Chris Gulaptis gave the official address at the opening of a new purpose-built science classroom at the Pacific Valley Christian School in Townsend on Wednesday August 1.
The NSW Government put $950,000 towards the $2million building’s construction.
“The school started from very humble beginnings nine years’ ago, with a student population of 24, and now has grown to an enrolment of 320, which are pretty amazing statistics,” he said in a media release following the event.
“Not only do we want to educate our kids but we want them to prosper, and we need to provide them with a 21st Century learning environment.”
At the opening, Mr Gulaptis said the school was setting a high standard.
“We want kids to be leaders, who have good values,” he said.
“Our community reaps the benefit for generations from, not just education, but Christian education.
“We want good leaders and to live in a society that is decent.”
The school’s principal, Scott Logan, said “it’s evident that the hand of God has been in every part of our story so far”.
He quoted Psalm 40:5: “Many, Lord my God, are the wonders you have done, the things you planned for us.”
He also thanked those who made land contributions towards the school’s inception, the NSW Government, the builders and others whose efforts contributed towards the building’s construction.
Mr Logan noted the work of previous principal, David Johnson, “to make school what it is today”.
Executive principal of the Pacific Group of Schools Dr Ted Boyce told an anecdote about Matthew Dougherty selling the original piece of land for $1 and a subsequent piece for less than a dollar.
“Thank God for the miracles of this school,” he said, “and what God has brought us; but it’s not finished yet.”
Mr Gulaptis said the new purpose-built facility houses two general learning areas and an amenities block.
“The new building is state of the art, but it is only one aspect of the school.
“The rest of it is made up by committed and nurturing teaching staff, enthusiastic and respectful students and parents who want their kids to succeed.
“There are also longstanding members of the community who also care … about the future of our community, such the Dougherty family, who generously donated land to the school, and local resident Ivars Katuzans, [from whom] the school purchased land to allow it to expand.
“Providing high quality learning environments is paramount in fostering young minds and educating and training our future leaders and innovators.
“I am pleased the NSW Government was able to partner with the school to bring this project to fruition.”