School expansion projects will cater for the county's growing population
A number of schools throughout Wexford are to begin renovation and expansion projects in the coming months as part of the Government's Additional Accommodation Scheme.
Presentation Secondary School in Wexford is to receive a new science laboratory which Principal William Ryan says will allow them to cater for a growing interest in the science subjects.
'We have a high demand for the sciences at our school and have had massive numbers of girls taking these subjects up every year. This grant will allow us to go from four to five science laboratories,' he said.
In addition to the new lab, the school also plan to build two new classrooms and new toilet facilities, creating a brand new wing at Presentation.
'We've grown quite significantly in recent years, we currently have 800 students and that's set to go to 830,' said Mr Ryan. 'This is something we need, there's huge pressure on parents at the moment, especially those of boys.'
With planning permission still to be finalised Mr Ryan said he is hopeful that works will begin sometime next year with a view to being completed in 2021.
Three National Schools in Gorey are also set for expansion, with Ballyoughter NS receiving funds for a new mainstream classroom with ensuite toilet, a toilet for assisted users and a Special Education Teacher (SET) Support Room. Kilanerin NS has also received funds for a mainstream classroom with ensuite toilets, a toilet for assisted users and two SET rooms. Court NS is the third Gorey school to receive funding - for a new mainstream classroom with ensuite toilets and a toilet for assisted users - and Principal Brendan Roache is hopeful that works will begin soon.
'The works are estimated to commence in the new school year,' he said. 'The school is delighted to receive this grant from the Department of Education and it will help us to meet the demands of the growing population.'
St Joseph's NS in Ballymitty is to install a brand new Special Educational Needs (SEN) base at its school, a move which Principal Audrey McCarthy says has been on the agenda for a substantial period of time.
'Over the past few years our board had expressed a desire to have an autism unit,' she said. 'It will be a state-of-the-art facility with a two classroom suite, a new office, a central activity space, a sensory garden and a multi-sensory room. It will be purpose-built and have everything the kids need, all their equipment and specialised furniture.'
Revealing that the works are expected to cost in the region of €1 million, Ms McCarthy said the hope was that the facility would be completed by September 2020.
In Ferns, Boolavogue NS has received funding for a new classroom, new toilets, a SET room and staff toilets.
Emergency works are also set to take place at the following schools:
Scoil Chroi Ro Naofa, Ballymurn, Enniscorthy, Co Wexford (External Environment Project), Scoil Ghormáin Naofa Castletown (Mechanical works) Court NS (Special Needs Projects) Scoil Naomh Bride (Special Needs Projects) Oylgate NS (Roof Works) Scoil Mhuire New Ross (Special Needs Projects), Gorey Community College (Gas Works), and Scoil Eoin Baiste (Fire Safety).
Information on the Additional Accommodation Scheme is available at www.education.ie