Archive for October, 2012

New Inner City School Design – Is it right?

According to the Sydney newspaper in Australia, The Daily Telegraph yesterday(18 Oct 2012, page 2), the New South Wales(NSW) State Government is considering on changing the planning of inner City schools due to lack of space and an increased demand for housing and enrollment places. Those parents sitting on the Parents & Citizens Committee who were briefed on the plan of their school(Ultimo Public School) by an Education Department Director felt horrified by what they heard.

Basically, the proposal is to demolish the Ultimo Public School sitting on 2 hectares/4.94211 acres of land space, the land sold to Developers who would build high rise buildings consisting of commercial and residential space and the new school. This would see the Primary(Elementary) School having to share sporting facilities or use public open space for outdoor activities.

This proposal would see the school enrollment numbers double to cope with the growth of population. Parents at the meeting aired concerns with child privacy and child protection. The Department told parents that nets and screen boards  could be used for the protection of privacy of the students at the redeveloped site.

The NSW Education Minister, Adrian Poccoli has said that there is no secret about the shortage of capacity for inner city and norther suburb schools. A parent has said that the P&C understands that the school is at capacity but does not believe that sandwiching the school amongst a high rise building is the answer.

Personally, I would like to see this plan and have it explained before one could make a judgement. I would also like to know if this has already been done anywhere in the World for if it has, what did they do, why did they do it and how did it work? Was it a success for a failure? What worked and what didn’t work? All those questions need to be asked.

Myself personally, I have no idea but I certainly might not have any objections if the genuine safety of children can be assured. I don’t believe that we have the right to hide our children away from society but make them part of it. One very large and important community. Having the kids using public space could be good instead of only releasing them into the Wild when they are an adult.

Reference material is from the Sydney(NSW, Australia) newspaper, The Daily Telegraph on page 2 titled, “High-rise plans for city’s most cramped schools”. – I cannot find any information on the internet.

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Blaxland Riverside Park Playground

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The youngest two children age nine and eight years old were restless yesterday. Bored and not much to do so I was threw them in the car along with a netbook computer to waste away my time while they played in the playground at McDonalds at Minchinbury. The playground there looks quite large.

On the way over in the car, my wife and I decided to drive further away and ended up at the Blaxland Riverside Park playground located at Sydney Olympic Park. It is a magnificent playground that is built into the natural landscape such as a slide that goes through a small hill. This is also the perfect playground for parents to take their children are who not into hovering over their offspring like flies on faecel matter. A crude term but one I see fitting for parents who have to hover over their children non stop. At this park, parents can sit back and let their kids go nuts.

We sat near the kiosk as we don’t have our own fold up chairs to take with us. Away from the area but nearby is a large picnic table set up and free BBQ’s. What a perfect way to make a day of it.

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There is also a water section where water spurts out of the ground. I think we’ll go there on a hot day with swimmers and towel so the kids can get wet and not have to ride back in the car soaking wet. We’ll also have to bring the eldest two children aged 15 and 11 years old for they will enjoy it for sure.

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We did end up at McDonald’s at Auburn nearby where the kids got to play in the large playground there. They aren’t use to everything being so big and so much from growing up in a regional city some 700 km’s from the nearest capital city. The free internet there was so slow, I have to wonder why bother they even bother having it at all.

Not ready to go home, we drove through Bankstown then to Heathcote before driving to Wollongong down the south coast. We didn’t get out when we got there. I tried to get near the coal terminal but you can’t get close due to the security set up. I thought it would have been good for the kids to see even if it was early dark.

Then we turned back onto the Freeway till we turned off on Appin Road through to Appin then into the back of Campbelltown and into Narellen where we stopped at McDonald’s for ice cream. I am not fond of their food but I do like their hot fudge sundae and their soft serve. Then back home we headed.

Will have to head back into Blaxland Riverside Park again. Would be good to make a day of it. Shame we can’t all fit into the car.

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Full Moon Circle

Every 28 days the moon is full. It is on these days that the Pagan Awareness Network based in Sydney(Australia) holds the Full Moon Circle at Seven Hills. There may be other locations they organise, I cannot remember. I attended many of the circle at Seven Hills in back in 2003 and 2004 before moving to Rockhampton about 1800km’s north of Sydney.

When I use to attends these circles, some of the time I took my eldest child but this time I took all four as they are all old enough to attend now. It was small gathering of about 20 people. The two young ladies running the circle were doing it for their first time which they did well, starting off with the usual castings before the four people holding a role of a quarter(north, south, east, west) handed out the tools for everyone to make a charm.

It was an easy going night and perfect for the kids first circle to attend. Next circle at the end of October will be Beltane which will see the Maypole used. The children should enjoy it.

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