Thirteen schools across Ballarat will share in almost $640,000 of funding to prepare for the coming bushfire season and complete much-needed school maintenance. The funding announcement comes in the same week that fire authorities warned fast running grassfires and fires in dry forests and woodlands were likely by late spring depending on fire and weather conditions and dryness in grasslands. Much of the money, which is part of a $15.3 million statewide cash injection, will improve safety for many schools and their nominated Shelter in Place building in the event of bushfire or grassfire. Nine local schools, including Scotsburn, Glen Park, Lal Lal, Linton, Mount Clear, Mount Egerton, Woady Yaloak -Scarscale and Balliang East primary schools, and Mount Clear College, will share in more than $188,000 of Bushfire Preparedness funding to clear vegetation and undertake other essential maintenance ahead of the upcoming bushfire season. Mount Clear Primary School is also among five schools to share $450,000 of Planned Maintenance Program funding for essential work to grounds and classrooms including fixing roofs and windows, painting,resurfacing floors and replacing windows and repairing landscaping. Mount Clear Primary principal Cameron Landry said the two grants coming to the school would help them prepare for the fire season and complete much needed works around the school including repairs to ceilings, downpipes, floors, lights, stairs, walls, tables and a shade structure, surfacing and painting, and the school's Shelter In Place building. Phoenix P-12 Community College, and Sebastopol, Canadian Lead and Mount Pleasant primary schools also received funding for high-priority maintenance works. "We will be able to put that money toward upkeep or our buildings, preparing them for fire season and being fire ready," Ms Landry said. "Having a shelter in place is really important for everyone, not just students but parents and the community to know in the event of a fire our children will be safe at school." Maintenance funding will also help create more shelters and tables outside for children to learn at and to socialise. "We provide a high quality education in the classroom and need to provide a high quality place where people want to come and enjoy being here." Buninyong MP Michaela Settle said the funding was timely on the first day of spring. "As we enter in to spring, our thoughts are turning toward summer and summer in Australia means bushfire season," she said. IN OTHER NEWS "This is about clearing trees and getting schools ready. Spring is a good time for a spring clean and this means schools can get themselves ready for the season, clear bush, chop down trees and get buildings ready." The package includes more than $9 million to 346 schools across Victoria as part of the 2020-21 Bushfire Preparedness (Vegetation) Program and 109 schools sharing in $6.3 million as part of the Planned Maintenance Program. "Quite a few schools across my electorate are wonderful bush schools but with that comes the risk of fire. It's incredibly important that we prepare the grounds around the school and the Shelter in Place program which means school children can shelter within schools." Have you signed up to The Courier's variety of news emails? You can register below and make sure you are up to date with everything that's happening in Ballarat.