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Toowoomba school aces secondary program

Highlands Christian College Tennis

Image: Year 7 and 8 students from Highlands Christian College try their hand at tennis.

Secondary students at Highlands Christian College in Toowoomba have experienced tennis for the very first time thanks to Sporting Schools and the Tennis Australia Partnership program. 

Local and international research has shown that there is a decline in sport participation for youth between 13-17 years old. The targeted Sporting Schools secondary school program – focusing on Year 7 and 8 students, particularly girls and inactive students – aims to address this and encourage a lifelong love of sport. 

Director of Sports at Highlands Christian College, Jennine Laird, saw the need to engage more of their Year 7 and 8 female students in physical activity and wanted to provide an opportunity for students not involved in sport to try new sports and have fun.  

“We were successful with our application and put out a note to our parents regarding this opportunity and within three days, the group was full. Fourteen girls and six boys signed up to the tennis program - one third of the group had never held a tennis racquet in their hands before.” Laird said. 

“One student remarked that she was terrified of going to the first session, but her fears soon gave way to delight as she followed the coach's instructions and started achieving success.” 

“Sporting Schools certainly provided an opportunity for our students to be active. For this we are so thankful.” 

Sport Australia’s Sporting Schools program is a $200 million Australian Government initiative designed to help schools increase children’s participation in sport, and to connect children with community sport. 

Sporting Schools has funded over 750 secondary schools since the targeted secondary program commenced in Term 3, 2017. 

Would your secondary school like to apply for Sporting Schools funding? Check out how to meet the program goals in your application on our Help Centre.