The Willows plans $650,000 upgrade to create more indoor learning space

The Willows plans $650,000 upgrade to create more indoor learning space

by Freya Lucas

July 02, 2020

The Willows Pre-School and Early Learning Centre, located in Orange, New South Wales, has submitted a development application to the Orange City Council for a $650,000 upgrade to build three new rooms, with the intention of creating more indoor space for children enrolled, rather than boosting capacity.


Three separate buildings would house an art space, a science and discovery area and rooms dedicated for meals with a kitchen, local news source Central Western Daily reported


Providing space to cater for children when the outside temperature is unpleasant was a component of the development application, with the service saying more indoor space is needed to support them to cater for children inside, “especially now that our temperatures regularly reach 35 degrees for periods of more than 10 days.” 


The pandemic, and recent summer of bushfires, were also influences on the application, which spoke about many days of poor air quality confining children to the indoors, as well as the service “re-thinking our ability to socially isolate to prevent the spread of seasonal influenzas” in the aftermath of COVID-19. 


The Willows opened in 2002, with 39 children. An additional junior preschool was added in 2006, and a senior preschool in 2011. The current capacity of the service is 104 children, with the service having been rated as Exceeding the National Quality Standard when last assessed in March 2016. 


To read the original coverage of this story, please see here