Rappville Public School principal Kat Collis with students in front of their phoenix mural. PIC: SUSANNA FREYMARK
Rappville Public School principal Kat Collis with students in front of their phoenix mural. PIC: SUSANNA FREYMARK

Like a phoenix, Rappville School rises from the ashes

SINCE the October 8 bushfire that tore through Rappville, school principal Kat Collis and her students have risen like a phoenix from the ashes.

The new school mural of a phoenix is an apt metaphor for how Rappville Public School has coped since the disaster and with the COVID-19 lockdown.

"We've taken every day as it comes and see what the day has bought," Ms Collis said of the school's resilience.

With news of a $50,000 grant from the Commonwealth Bank Bushfire Fund, Ms Collis can install a shadecloth over the playground as the trees that used to shade the school were burnt.

She also plans to create a native bush fence line.

FIND OUT: Who bought the historic Rappville Pub?

As the fire tore through the village seven months ago, the school was the evacuation centre where residents and farm animals huddled through a horrifying night of fire.

Ms Collis said the response of parents and carers to the staff efforts to support families affected by the bushfires really showed how schools play a vital role in community cohesion.

"The school became a focus for people needing and offering support," she said.

"So, despite the disruption the fires brought and the changes families had to make, we have managed to maintain our enrolment at 11 students, just one less than at the start of the year."

READ: Bold news signs for the village of Rappville

A bonus of home learning during lockdown was the increase in home cooking, Ms Collis said.

"We're now using that to maintain students' interest in healthy eating while incorporating maths and literacy into weekly cooking lessons," she said.

"There's always plenty of talk about silver linings in times of difficulty, but our school community translated that into the wellbeing of our students and creating hands-on activities for real educational benefit.

"This, and working together, are all vital parts of Rappville's recovery."

 

Rappville house site next to the school after the October fire. PIC: SUSANNA FREYMARK
Rappville house site next to the school after the October fire. PIC: SUSANNA FREYMARK


'Mad Max' madness: Families terrorised by teen 4WD drivers

Premium Content 'Mad Max' madness: Families terrorised by teen 4WD drivers

Teen drivers in 4WD vehicles terrorised walkers at beach

Crack fire team on standy to protect life and property

Premium Content Crack fire team on standy to protect life and property

AS THE mercury is predicted to rise over 40C, a team of experienced remote...

Northern Rivers’ towns set to hit low 40s this weekend

Premium Content Northern Rivers’ towns set to hit low 40s this weekend

A POTENTIALLY dangerous heatwave is set to roll across the region in the coming...