Laois Offaly school waiting for new building is getting more prefabs

Lynda Kiernan

Reporter:

Lynda Kiernan

Offaly school gets planning permission for six prefab classrooms

A secondary school serving over 1,000 students from Laois and Offaly long overdue its new building, is getting two more prefabs.

Coláiste Iosagáin in Portarlington is waiting for several years for a major rebuild, big enough for 1200 students.

The new classrooms will bring to 18 the number of prefabs at the site, supplementing an outdated building meant for half the number of students.

The Board of Management is applying to Offaly County Council for planning permission to install two more temporary prefabricated buildings on site.

In 2016, the library and the prayer room were turned into classrooms, with hopes that the sod would be turned in 2017. Construction will take an estimated three years, done in stages while students continue to be taught on site.

Six months ago the staff and parents told the Leinster Express how the overcrowded school is impacting on student and staff, causing stress and reducing security because exit doors must be left open to allow students get to and from prefabs. 

“We do not have the facilities we deserve and need,” Principal Seamus Bennett said in October 2018.

The project is on the Department of Education's six year school building program to commence construction in 2019 – 21

It is at Stage 1 of Architectural planning which entails preliminary examination of site and location suitability and initial sketch scheme. A Stage 1 submission with costs is being reviewed by the Department of Education and Skills since May 2018.

Below: students in a crowded corridor in Coláiste Iosagáin.