Kaponga Primary School pupils have received new wheels thanks to Sport Taranaki’s Tū Manawa Active Aotearoa Fund.
Principal Shane Downs says the school received around $8000 in funding to purchase 18 new bikes of different sizes for the pupils.
“It’s about removing the barriers to being active and this funding has helped us do that. This helps the kids that may not have bikes to ride at school but also takes the pressure away from parents to bring their child’s bike to school. Bikes take up a lot of space and it may not always be convenient to bring them.”
The bikes arrived at the school earlier this month and were assembled by staff from Torpedo 7. The staff gave the pupils a demonstration on how to put together and look after the bikes.
“We appreciate them for taking the time to come out and show our pupils how to properly care for these assets.”
Shane says no bike is complete without a helmet and with a recent donation of 65 helmets, nearly every student has their own.
“We want our pupils to have fun, but to also stay safe as well.”
Ronin Symes, 12, says the new bikes are awesome, with different sizes to accommodate the students.
“It’s great because we’ll all be able to share and everyone can have a turn.”
Shane says encouraging healthy living and lifestyles is important.
“We want our students to succeed in all areas.”
It’s also about keeping the pupils safe, he says.
“We have a purpose-built bike track the pupils can use, which is a lot safer than driving on a road. These bikes will be great to use on our school bike track, during our school triathlons, and also will help alleviate the pressure when RoadSafe Taranaki come in each year to go over bike skills.”
Sport Taranaki healthy active learning adviser Mattie Thomas says he’s worked with the school for just over a year.
“The school’s planning process has been superb in finding ways to help the pupils to be more active. Part of their process was the bike track and the scooter pad. The principal, school staff, and school community have been fantastic and prioritise the pupils’ health and wellbeing.”