Construction has started on a future P-12 school in Wyndham Vale, with a sod-turning ceremony marking the occasion last week.

Wyndham Christian College, which is being built on Ballan Road near Wyndham Vale Christian Centre, is set to open for prep to grade four pupils in term one of next year.

It will be a sister school for Heatherton Christian College in Clarinda in Melbourne’s south-east.

On Wednesday, college representatives and Wyndham mayor Peter Maynard attended the sod-turning.

Dan Parker, the chairman of Christian Resource Ministries – the body that oversees the schools and church – also attended.

Mr Parker said that the Heatherton school had received more than 500 queries from families, hoping to enrol children at the Wyndham college between next year and 2020. But he said that the college had already filled its student quota for next year.

He said when the college opened, it would have about 125 pupils, including two prep classes.

Heatherton Christian College executive principal Peter Cliffe, who will also be executive principal of the new Wyndham college, said the school’s master plan was to eventually have 1450 pupils from grade prep to year 12. He said the school would add a grade five class next year and a new year level in each subsequent year.

Cr Maynard said that with more than 250,000 residents and a fast-growing population, Wyndham would need six new high schools and 20 new primary schools by 2036.

“That’s why today’s sod-turning is so important,” he said. “The new Wyndham Christian College is a welcome addition to our city. The Wyndham Christian College will provide local education for our young residents.”