Smoke billowed through Gold Creek Senior School on Monday, as bad spirits were cleansed away in preparation for a much-needed extension project.
The ACT government has engaged Indigenous construction company Rork Projects to build the $1 million expansion in line with its Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Procurement Policy.
The new space will increase the senior school capacity by 200, taking the total capacity to 1000 high school students.
Rork Projects co-owner John Janke, said the company placed a high value on education and investing in the future of Canberra.
"For us it's an opportunity to really help grow the community spirit here and obviously the facilities but build the next generation of Canberrans," he said.
Rork Projects was born out of a family business started 24 years ago by Brian O'Rourke. It grew from small operation with two people in Kingston into a national company with 95 staff over four offices. The company recently worked on the City Walk revitalisation and rejuvenation of iconic bus shelters.
"We want to engage as many other Indigenous businesses on the projects as possible, because that helps with capacity employment opportunities for Canberrans, but importantly indigenous Canberrans," Mr Janke said.
Ms Berry said it was important for young people to see indigenous role models.
"When they see these projects happening in their school spaces and see that as an opportunity for themselves to get into work in that trade, and know that they can be engaged in those kinds of projects, it's more than just the job."
Gold Creek Senior School has 564 students this year, but this is expected to grow to 929 students by 2030.
Gold Creek Junior School enrolments are expected to remain relatively stable, but Ms Berry said their five transportable classrooms were likely to stay.
"Some of those transportables are relatively new. So they'll need to stay there for as long as... they have a useful life at the school and perhaps beyond if the school decides to use them for other other teaching and learning spaces."
The extension is expected to be complete by the beginning of the 2022 school year.
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