Belfast Telegraph

O’Dowd highlights £2.3million investment in the schools estate

Stormont Executive press release - Department of Education

Schools across the north will benefit from approximately £2.3million investment in the coming months under the Minor Works Scheme.

Speaking about the investment today, Education Minister, John O’Dowd said: “Since January this year, £19.4million has been allocated to minor works contracts with £2.3million being invested in 19 contracts during the month of May.

“This ongoing investment in the schools estate is having a positive impact on pupils, teachers and school staff and provides a much needed boost to the construction industry at what is a challenging time for local firms.”

Minor Works Contracts awarded during May include the refurbishment of the kitchen and dining areas at St Mary’s Star of the Sea Primary School; new modular classrooms for Ballyclare Secondary School and Knockloughrim Primary School, Magherafelt and replacement windows at St Killian’s College, Carnlough.

During the past year 40 new school building projects were given approval to proceed representing a potential investment of £353million.

The Minister said: “These major projects obviously generate a significant amount of interest and have a positive impact not only on those individual school communities but also on the local economy. However, in addition to these more high profile projects, it is important to note that there continues to be investment in the schools estate on an ongoing basis.”

The Minister continued: “I am confident that the ongoing substantial investment in the minor works programmes will help in the drive to improve educational standards. The completion of these works will ultimately provide better facilities for our children and young people to learn in and an improved working environment for teachers and other school staff.”

Notes to editors:

1. Minor Works contracts awarded during May:

a. Ballyclare Secondary – provision of two double modular classrooms and associated toilets £491,500.
b. Ballyclare High – modular extensions and refurbishment works £499,990.
c. Knockloughrim Primary School, Magherafelt – new double modular classroom and refurbishment of exisiting toilets £229,650.
d. St Joseph’s College Coleraine – refurbishment of art room £159,312.
e. Cross & Passion College, Ballycastle – refurbishment of changing rooms and provision of hygiene rooms £179,997.
f. St Killian’s College, Carnlough – replacement windows £194,514.
g. St Peter’s Primary School, Dungannon – replacement mobile £115,000.
h. St Mary’s Star of the Sea – refurbishment of kitchen and dining areas £175,000.

2. The Department of Education’s ‘Education Works’ campaign encourages families to play, talk, read and count with their child and to ‘Get Involved Because Education Works’. The campaign highlights the vital role families can play in helping children do well at school and improve their life chances. Visit http://www.nidirect.gov.uk/education-works for more information.

Watch the TV ad on the Department’s YouTube channel: http://www.youtube.com/thedeptofeducation

3. See photos from the Department of Education in our collection at http://www.flickr.com/niexecutive

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