Mum's relief as safety upgrades finally promised for school
AGNES Water State School students will finally get a Stop and Go zone, more than two years after a young girl was hit by a bus and left permanently disabled.
The Queensland Government has allocated $860,000 in its budget to improve traffic safety outside the school, which is situated on a main road.
In 2016 Tembi Ward almost lost her legs when a bus's wheels ran over her lower body as she walked out of school.
The shocking accident sparked a community campaign for safety improvements.
The project will include a vehicle turnaround at the end of the street and Stop and Go zone for parents dropping off children.
Tembi's mother Dimmity welcomed the news but questioned why the school did not have safe zones in the first place.
"Tembi and our family are very happy to see that some sort of safety at least is going to be put in place at the school so hopefully no other family has to endure the hardship and anguish we have endured for the past two-and-a-half years and continue to,” Mrs Ward said.
"We will forever ask the question as to why there was no safety in place when the school was initially built.
"It's a pity it took our daughter to end up with a permanent disability and a lifetime of pain management just for the State Government to do what they should have done in the first place, which was have safety.”
Member for Burnett Stephen Bennett said he was disappointed it had taken so long but thrilled that the work was finally going ahead.
"For more than two years we have been calling and pleading with the Labor government to step-up and deliver this much-needed funding for the area,” Mr Bennett said.
"Our children's safety should always be our No. 1 priority.”
Mr Bennett said some work had already started, such as moving fences and surveying of the plot provided by Education Queensland.
"It took a long time going through designs and getting acceptance but ... we want there to be no more incidents,” he said.
Mr Bennett said he expected the project to begin this financial year.
Agnes Water State School principal Tim Loughland said the school was delighted it would soon have a safer frontage.
"This will directly benefit the safety of our students. Our No. 1 priority is safety and this announcement and future work solidifies that,” Mr Loughland.