Staff, students have a ball on new courts
A funky new basketball court at O’Connor Primary School has been a welcome upgrade for both students and staff.
Completed earlier this week, the new artificial turf courts have proven to be not only safer than the original style, but far more aesthetically pleasing to the school community.
Deputy principal Candice Brown said there had been a flood of both children and staff on the courts since the official opening on Thursday.
“Our old basketball courts were in quite poor condition and we couldn’t use them much because if we did and a child fell over, they always ended up quite hurt … now it is just like falling on carpet,” Mrs Brown said.
“The first recess time we had it opened, I think we had about 250 kids out there, and there wasn’t one problem, they just played a bit of basketball and had a run around.
“Being such a large school, we really need to utilise all of our spaces around the school grounds to make sure we are not too crowded, and having the basketball courts back is really great for that.”
The school originally looked at redoing the courts with the same bitumen as before, but the costs were “astronomical”.
“We found quite a few schools across the State … were using this, and it stood the test of harsh environments and also looks good,” Mrs Brown said. “We are looking at possibly redoing one of the junior areas and putting some hopscotch, four square and things like that with the same turf.”
While used predominantly for netball and basketball, the courts can also cater for hockey and volleyball.
Mrs Brown said many of the school staff was on local hockey teams, and plans had already been made for a scratch-match one day after school.
“There is a little bit of rivalry so they have already organised a game to try out the new turf, which should be interesting,” she said.
The courts were funded jointly by the school and the school’s P&C committee.
Ashton Dahmen, 11, Allyssa Freeman, 11, and Lorrence Bennell, 11, enjoy the new basketball court at O’Connor Primary School.