A new post-primary school in Portlaoise could be welcoming its first students as early as September 2017.
The Department of Education has confirmed that the post-primary school would ultimately have capacity for 1,000 pupils.
“In November 2015, the Minister announced the establishment of 4 primary schools and 9 post-primary schools to open in 2017 and 2018, including a 1,000 pupil post-primary school to serve the Portlaoise area, which will open in September 2017,” said a statement.
The patronage of the new school is yet to be decided with representatives from Educate Together and the Gaelcolaiste both hoping that they would be responsible for the running of the new school.
The process to determine the patronage will start later this year.
“The patronage determination process for new schools is a separate process to the decision to establish a new school,” a spokesperson for the Department of Education said.
“It is envisaged that the patronage determination process for the post-primary school to serve Portlaoise will commence in late 2016, at which stage, patrons, patron bodies and prospective patrons can submit their application.”
The spokesperson continued: “Parental preferences are central to this process and prospective patrons are required to provide evidence of demand for their particular type of school. It is open to all patrons, patron bodies and prospective patrons to apply for patronage of a new school under this process.”
A new home for the school has yet to be decided but three school buildings will be vacated this summer. Part of the old tech also remains unused. However, the Department said they were working on identifying and securing suitable accommodation.