Hard hats, safety glasses, protective gloves and hi vis vests became part of the school uniform for 21 students when Peabody’s Wambo Mine became a giant, outdoor classroom on May 28.
The students from Milbrodale, Jerrys Plains, Martindale and Broke public schools toured the Wambo operations as part of the Upper Hunter Mining Dialogue’s School Mine Tours Program.
Students saw a presentation which explained the mining operations and the coal chain from pit to port before touring the mine by bus visiting a lookout over the mine pit, rehabilitation areas, the mine workshop and catching a glimpse of the historical Wambo Homestead.
Students even got the rare opportunity to climb aboard one of the mine’s giant haul trucks.
Along the way, Wambo mine workers provided expert commentary about all aspects of mining.
The tour was part of the Dialogue’s School Mine Tours Program which will see an estimated 1000 Year 5 and Year 9 students from Upper Hunter schools tour mine sites in 2018. The school tours program is scheduled to include 27 individual tours from 18 participating schools visiting 13 different mine sites across the Upper Hunter.
The tours program aims to offer a fact-based, first-hand educational experience to teach local students about the impacts and benefits of coal mining in the Upper Hunter.
The Dialogue offers the free tours to all schools in the Singleton-Muswellbrook educational catchment and the program uses educational materials and messaging developed by a Dialogue working group made up of teachers, community members and industry and local government representatives.