Above: WA Premier, Mark McGowan, visited Joseph Banks Secondary College to make the announcement of a $16.1m upgrade to school facilities. Image courtesy Joseph Banks Secondary College.

PERTH’S JOSEPH BANKS SECONDARY COLLEGE will get a new building featuring a space learning centre as part of a $16.1m government-funded upgrade.

The new building will provide standard classrooms as well as special classrooms for science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) learning.

The development is one part of a five-year plan to establish a space academy at the school, which currently has 1,500 students.

The Space Science Education Centre will have a simulated Martian or lunar surface, facilities to perform space science experiments, and technology that will give students a ‘mission control experience’.

The school has been introducing a range of STEM learning programs and developing relationships with other bodies such as the Victorian Space Science Education Centre.

“It’s not every day that students get to experience what it’s like to be in space, especially in the comfort of their own classroom,” said WA Premier Mark McGowan, who visited the school on Friday, August 14. “These facilities will provide students with some extraordinary learning opportunities.”