independent

Monday 25 March 2019

Future-proofing at Castlebridge NS with new extension

Oldest pupils, Paddy Connors and Marta Mastek, and the youngest, Sehrah and Ryan, turn the sod on Castlebridge school’s newest extension, with the help of the school principal Ed Lyons, members of the Board of Management, members of the Parents Council and architect Joe Fox
Oldest pupils, Paddy Connors and Marta Mastek, and the youngest, Sehrah and Ryan, turn the sod on Castlebridge school’s newest extension, with the help of the school principal Ed Lyons, members of the Board of Management, members of the Parents Council and architect Joe Fox

Pádraig Byrne

It was the dawning of a new era at Castlebridge National School last week as principal Edward Lyons was joined by members of the board of management and parents council in turning the sod on a new state of the art extension which is to be completed by September.

The extension is to consist of one classroom and two Special Education Needs (SEN) rooms and is the culmination of what Mr Lyons calls 'a long process' for the Board of Management.

'The process began with us making an application for a single room extension and being granted such,' he explained. 'At this stage, we began to look at the possibility of utilising board funds and parent's council contributions to make the dream of a devoted SEN area a reality.'

Mr Lyons spoke of the wonderful work the SEN teachers do at the school in often difficult circumstances and thanked the parent's council for all their support in getting to this point.

Mahon & Fox architects have been appointed as architects and John Grey Construction will complete the build, hopefully within six months. 'As a board of management, we are very excited to have reached the beginning of this invaluable process,' said Mr Lyons.

Castlebridge NS currently caters for 229 pupils and employs nine teachers and 4 SEN teachers.

The good news didn't end there for the school. The parent's council were also delighted to hand over a set of ten iPads which Mr Lyons says will help enormously with the implementation of the school's new digital strategy.

There was also a wonderful donation of €3,000 from owner of the local Maxol Service Station Patrick Durack and his wife Claire. With their children passing through the school, the couple were anxious to do their bit for their new home community, having moved the entire family from Clare some time ago. They got in touch with the board of management who were overwhelmed by their generosity.

Mr Lyons and Brendan O'Sullivan of the parent's council issued a huge thank you to the Durack family and Mr Lyons quipped: 'I can say with total confidence that he (Patrick) is the most loved Clare person in this village; even more than a certain hurling manager!'

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