Queensland school builds centre for automation and robotics

A Queensland high school is building an automation and robotics centre that will see more students learning about the latest technologies.

Alexandra Hills State High School has started constructing the new $4.77 million Centre for Excellence in Automation and Robotics.

Member for Capalaba Don Brown said the school’s future-focussed programs were becoming increasingly popular.

The centre will enhance the school’s reputation for innovation and excellence in the areas of design, robotics and coding, he said.

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“Around half the Year 9 cohort for 2019 have selected a digital technology subject as an elective,” he said.

“The school, which operates its centre of excellence in partnership with the Queensland Minerals and Energy Academy (QMEA), has seen a 150 per cent increase in the number of students studying academic technology subjects over the past three years.

“That number is likely to continue to increase once the new complex opens in time for the 2020 school year,” said Brown.

Education minister Grace Grace said the building project was part of the Queensland government’s 2020 Ready program.

“Our 2020 Ready program is delivering the buildings and extensions we need to manage the increased student population in state high schools from the introduction of Prep in 2007.

“With the original half-cohort of Prep students set to graduate from high school at the end of 2019, we will have — for the very first time in 2020 — six full year levels of students in Queensland secondary schools,” said Grace.

“The Alexandra Hills State High School project is also helping to drive the Queensland economy by supporting up to 12 full-time jobs during construction,” she said.

Alexandra Hills State High School also hosts an annual competition open to all schools in the Redlands, called Innovate, which focusses on developing students’ skills in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM).

In 2018 a total of 200 students took part in Innovate, which also involves industry partners such as the Australian Centre for Robotic Vision at Queensland University of Technology, Freelance Robotics Hastings Deering CAT and others.