Seven Educate Together national schools will have new permanent buildings constructed in 2013. The Department of Education and Skills released its list of projects to go to construction in 2013 today. In addition to the new primary buildings, three Educate Together post-primary school projects were also announced.
Commenting on the project list, Educate Together CEO Paul Rowe said ‘We are delighted with the news. It is especially good news for Esker ETNS, Carrigaline ETNS and Gaelscoil an Ghoirt Álainn which have all been campaigning for permanent accommodation for many years. These new buildings will have a hugely positive impact on their respective school communities’.
Esker Educate Together National School was opened as an emergency school in 2007 to serve the growing Lucan school population. It initially shared space in Adamstown Castle ETNS and, when it outgrew that space, moved to prefabs erected for Adamstown Community College. The school now has over 300 pupils and twenty teachers. Paul Rowe again “The announcement of Esker ETNS’s new building is especially welcome. Educate Together opened the school at the Department of Education’s request in 2007 and we are delighted the see the Department is honouring the commitment given at that time for a new school’.
Another long running struggle will be resolved in 2013 with the completion of Gaelscoil an Ghoirt Álainn’s permanent school building in Cork City. The school, is under the patronage of An Foras Pátrúnachta and is also a member of Educate Together. It has been seeking a permanent home for nearly 20 years. A long standing planning dispute, that delayed construction of the school, was finally overcome in October this year. Paul Rowe has warmly welcomed this development. “Gaelscoil an Ghoirt Álainn has long suffered in unsuitable temporary accommodation. It is terrific news to see this school finally receiving the quality of building that its parents, pupils and staff have long deserved.”
The other Educate Together primary schools scheduled for completion in 2013 are Skerries, Kildare Town, Portlaoise and Greystones.
In addition to the primary schools announced, work will also commence on the first three Educate Together second-level schools in 2013. The schools at Hansfield (Blanchardstown), Clonburris (Lucan) and Ballymakenny (Drogheda) are scheduled to open in 2014. Hansfield will open under Educate Together’s patronage while the schools in Lucan and Drogheda will be operated in association with Co Dublin and Co Louth VEC’s respectively.
There are currently 65 primary schools in the Educate Together network, 5 of which opened this year. There are over 16,000 pupils attending Educate Together schools nationally with over 1,000 teaching professionals employed. Educate Together schools are multi-denominational and are open to all children regardless of their social, religious or cultural backgrounds. The first Educate Together school, Dalkey School Project, opened in 1978.