ENROLMENT numbers for Yanchep Secondary College have already exceeded expectations as staff prepare for it to open next year.
Foundation principal James Kent said planning so far had included choosing the official name, recruiting teachers and selecting a uniform design, which future students can try on at the temporary office on Lindsay Beach Boulevard.
His deputy principals are Sharon Taylor, who has transferred from Yanchep District High School, and Anthony Johnson, who previously worked in Albany.
Dr Kent said enrolment numbers passed 555 last week and they expected to start with about 600 students in Years 7 to 11 on January 31.
“We originally predicted to open with 450,” he said.
“We will grow in year two – we should get to about 1000 students in year three or four.”
Ms Taylor said the biggest cohort in 2018 would be in Year 7, with more than 150 students enrolled in six classes.
The school will open as an independent public school and is ultimately expected to accommodate about 1500 students.
Its catchment area will extend from north Alkimos to Nilgen, which means students leaving Lancelin Primary School can do all six years of high school at Yanchep rather than two there after four at Gingin District High School.
Mr Johnson brings his physical education experience to the school and plans to ensure sport will be a big part of what is offered there.
“The community is very keen that we do a lot of after school sporting activities and cultural activities,” Dr Kent said.
Mr Johnson said they would maximise student participation by offering a range of sports, including cross country, athletics, football, netball and marine sports.
“In place of a swimming carnival, we are going to try put a beach carnival in,” he said.
Dr Kent said they were keen to do more ocean sports, including surfing, sailing and fishing, and aimed to introduce marine and maritime subjects, such as boat building, in 2019.
“We have been looking for staff that can work in with marine sciences,” he said.
“We have identified a couple of teachers who we will bring on and from 2019, we will offer certificate courses.”
Dr Kent said they had also started discussions with the City of Wanneroo and ECU and established a relationship with Yanchep Institute to give students a variety of learning opportunities.
“We are ensuring that the students in Yanchep get the depth of curriculum that they should get,” he said.
With better facilities at the new school, Dr Kent students would be able to do more in subjects such as wood and metal work as well.
“It’s a very exciting facility – the community won’t have seen anything like the facilities we have got there,” he said.
He said the 21st Century focus that includes teaching computer coding would equip students “with the skills needed for students to get jobs in the next 20 years”.
It will be a “bring your own device” school where students can download text books rather than carry hard copies and all classrooms will have e-boards.
Dr Kent said they had done 90 per cent of the recruitment, with the final appointments likely to take place in January based on final enrolment numbers.
So far, they have appointed about 35 teaching staff, seven administrative staff and 25 support staff.
Dr Kent said handover was expected to take place in January, and staff would be busy over summer moving in and preparing for the first students.
Ms Taylor said the students were excited about the cafeteria, basketball courts and gymnasium.