Maghera college gets share of £156m investment in schools' estate

St Patrick’s College in Maghera is one of nine schools to benefit from a share of an estimated capital investment of £156m.

Tuesday, 23rd June 2020, 3:18 pm
Updated Tuesday, 23rd June 2020, 4:45 pm
Education Minister Peter Weir MLA.

Education Minister Peter Weir announced that three primary and six-post primary schools would advance in design under the Major Capital Works Programme.

Speaking in the Assembly on Tuesday, the Mr Weir said: “I am today announcing nine school projects to advance in design under the Major Capital Works Programme, which will result in an investment in the region of £156m in the schools’ estate.

“Improving the schools’ estate is one of my priorities and in the current unprecedented and difficult times, I hope this latest announcement regarding major capital investment will send a strong signal to the local construction industry and local communities that the Department of Education is planning for the future and is committed to supporting the local economy and the wider community through the delivery of our capital programme.”

Mr Weir said his Department’s capital programme aims to ensure that all our young people are educated in school facilities which are safe, secure and fit-for-purpose, enabling them to receive the quality education experience required to help them to fulfil their potential.

The Minister added: “This announcement today represents another strand of the overall capital programme and follows my announcement in May of funding of a further sixteen projects under the School Enhancement Programme.”

SDLP MLA Patsy McGlone welcomed the announcement. “I have been in regular contact with St Patrick's College, Maghera on the need for improvements to the school estate over recent years. I have had visits with Department officials, the school principal, the chair of the board of governors and Councillor Martin Kearney on site to see the school facilities," he said.

“At my invitation, on 12 th March the Education Minister was able to make St Patrick’s College one of his last school visits prior to lockdown and I thank him for doing so.

“While the major capital works projects for St Patrick’s College will now progress to the design stage, work will not likely commence until the 2024/25 financial year.

“That said, when completed pupils and staff at St Patrick’s College will benefit from the provision of modern, fit-for-purpose facilities.

“I will continue to work with the school and the Department to ensure the capital works project progresses through design and the remaining stages to delivery.”

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