Wheels are in motion to expand region's tiny school
A SCHOOL with one of the lowest number of enrolments in the region is looking to expand so they can apply for a much-needed school bus.
While the 99-year-old rural and remote public school has a total of only nine students currently enrolled, Afterlee Public School has plenty of room to take in new students.
Parent and Afterlee School administration officer Michelle Murphy said it was the school's smaller numbers and her daughter receiving more attention and nurturing from her teachers that was the big draw card for her.
"When I was deciding where to send my children, it was the one on one time from the teachers in a smaller environment that helped me make my choice, and it proved to be correct,” Mrs Murphy said.
"All the teachers are fantastic.
"It's a gentle school which is very community based. We have an active P&C and a strong focus on arts and music, not just academic which was also a selling point for me.”
Mrs Murphy said the low enrolment numbers at the school was partially due to its remote location.
"That was one thing for me I looked at it and thought 'oh no there's no bus I have to drive out there every day' which is quite a commitment,” she said.
"What I didn't realise is that we get reimbursed for our travel ... twice a year I get a cheque from NSW Transport for driving our kids to school. It's a real bonus.
"All parents can get it, it's called private conveyancing, you get paid for the number of kilometres you drive your kids to school.”
She said if the school receives enough student enrolments for next year they will be in the position to apply for a school bus.
"A bus will definitely be on the cards if we can get the minimum numbers needed,” she said.
She urged parents looking for a school in the area to utilise the school's Kindy orientation days in the coming months before making a decision.
"Anyone is welcome to come and see what we do and meet the other kids,” she said.
"There's no obligation, come and have a quick chat and look or stay for the whole three hours.”
She said they hoped to continue to be an important part of the Afterlee community for years to come.
"We are having our centenary in October next year next year and we have people coming from all over the country to celebrate,” she said.
"It's very exciting time for us.”
Afterlee Public School Kindergarten Orientation dates are as follows: Term 4, 2018, Thursday 9am-12pm (October 25, November 1, November 8, November 15, November 22).
For more info on the Private Vehicle Conveyance subsidy head to: https://apps.transport.nsw.gov.au/ssts/schoolDriveSubsidy#/