Work has began on creating the roadways into the new parish school campus, however it will still be another two years before the building work is completed.
The almagamation of three Parish Primary schools has gone through the eTender process and the architects are currently drawing up a list of suitably qualified firms, according to local parish priest, Monsignor John Byrne. They shortlist of building firms will then be invited to tender for the building contract in the near future. Msgr Byrne hopes that they will be on site in Spetember. The build will take 18 months.
“Currently work is being done on the provision of the road into the school, and we are glad to see this work begin,” Msgr Byrne said.
The new building will see the amalgamation of Sacred Heart, Scoil Mhuire and St Paul’s into two 24 classrooms schools at Aughnaharna. One school will be a Junior Primary, up to and including 2nd class and the senior primary from 3rd to 6th class.
The 10 acre site will also include a Sports Hall shared between the two schools, which will be called Nagle Hall (after Nano Nagle, founder of the Presentation Sisters and a playing pitch sufficient in size to accommodate a juvenile GAA pitch.
The parish have provided €500,000 purchase price of the €1.25million site. The Presentation Sister have provided the remaining €625,000 towards the purchase of the site.
Msgr Byrne is also hopeful that that Minister for Education, Ruari Quinn will bring positive news for Scoil Bhríde, Knockmay when he visits Portlaoise, next Monday. Planning permission has been granted and plans are at an advanced stage for a new 32 classroom school to replace the existing buildings and prefabs at the school.
“We are waiting on the go-ahead from the Department of Education to advance this project to reality,” Msgr Byrne said, “we are hoping that the Minister will bring good news with him next Monday when he vists the sites.”