An exciting new partnership will provide improved tennis facilities at Queensland state schools and give tennis enthusiasts from the wider community greater access to those facilities.
Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said the government and Tennis Queensland had joined forces to deliver the Tennis in State Schools initiative with the aim of increasing students participation in tennis as well as making the sport more accessible to Queenslanders.
“Off the back of another exciting summer of tennis, I am thrilled to serve the next ace – a special funding partnership with Tennis Queensland,” the Premier said.
“Queensland has produced some great tennis champions. Rod Laver, Pat Rafter and Sam Stosur have done us all proud.
“Now we’ve got Ash Barty leading the charge up the current world rankings, and other young Queenslanders John Millman, Jordan Thompson, Kimberly Birrell and Priscilla Hon are making their mark internationally as well.
“I am sure many more young people are keen to emulate their success.
“Under the three-year, $1.5 million initiative, all state schools will be able to apply for funding to improve their tennis facilities.
“The initiative will consider a range of proposals, including new courts, improvements to existing courts, and repairs of existing tennis facilities.
“Once the facilities have been upgraded, they will be available for community use, with Tennis Queensland providing insurance cover for the facilities if the school is affiliated with it.”
Funding for the initiative will comprise equal contributions from Tennis Queensland, the Department of Education and individual Queensland state schools, on a ‘third-share’ basis.
“The Palaszczuk Government is already a key sponsor of the Brisbane International and Brisbane International Schools Challenge. This agreement will now extend our partnership through the delivery of new or upgraded tennis facilities at schools,” The Premier said.
Education Minister Grace Grace said there were close to 900 state schools across the state with a tennis or multi-purpose court, however only 275 have a specifically designated tennis court.
“We have structured the program to ensure that as many eligible schools as possible will benefit,” Ms Grace said.
“We are working on the principle that if you provide the right facilities, students will want to play tennis.
“This program will help support participation in tennis in state schools as part of a broader whole-of-Government approach to promote active and healthy living and improve participation of school students in the sport of tennis.”
Tennis Queensland CEO Mark Handley welcomed the opportunity to encourage more young Queenslanders to get active through tennis.
“Tennis Queensland is delighted to partner with the Queensland Government to ensure state schools in Queensland are provided with the opportunity to improve their tennis playing infrastructure,” Mr Handley said.
“Tennis is genuinely a sport for life. We are thrilled to support this initiative for students and the wider community to access tennis and facilitate a life-long love of the sport.”
Mount Ommaney MP Jessica Pugh said she is absolutely thrilled that the Premier and Minister Grace are backing the program.
“I know that Corinda State High will be first in line to apply for this funding,” Ms Pugh said.
“Principal Helen Jamieson and I have been working on taking Corinda’s tennis program up a notch, and I’m thrilled that the Palaszczuk Government wants to help our future tennis stars get to the next level.”
Schools can apply for funding from March 25 to May 24, with the successful applicants to be advised during late term 2.
For more information, schools are encouraged to visit One Portal.
NB Brisbane has been named as the host city for Australia’s Fed Cup by BNP Paribas World Group semi-final against Belarus from 20-21 April 2019.
The tie will be played on hard court at Pat Rafter Arena as Fed Cup returns to Brisbane for the first time since 2016.
Premier and Minister for Trade
The Honourable Annastacia Palaszczuk
Minister for Education and Minister for Industrial Relations
The Honourable Grace Grace