A new Coosan National School building costing in the region of €5m is to go to construction next year, ending a 16-year long wait for the project to get final stage approval from Government.
Coosan NS will be a new 16-classroom school with a two-classroom special needs unit once complete.
The news has been welcomed by Fine Gael Deputy for Longford-Westmeath, Peter Burke: “I am delighted that the Department of Education and Skills has been able to allocate funding to allow Coosan NS go to tender,” he said.
“I have been working hard, along with Cllrs Tom Farrell and John Dolan to ensure that the school receives the funding it so badly needed and I am delighted that Minister Bruton has listened to myself, to staff and to the community and has authorised significant funding today. When it is complete, the school will be a state-of-the-art top class educational facility that will serve children in Coosan for generations to come.”
Independent Deputy, Kevin ‘Boxer’ Moran, said: “For the local community, parents and pupils, both present and past, the delay has been tremendously frustrating particularly so when the previous Government gave assurances that a new school would be built in Coosan in 2015/2016. Over 260 pupils attending the school are currently being taught in pre-fabs and that is simply not good enough.
“My colleague and Minister of State, John Halligan, was shocked at the condition of some of the buildings and pre-fabs when he visited the school on Monday. Thankfully, an end has finally been put to the numerous false starts that the new school project has encountered. I will be keeping an extremely close eye on the project over the coming months to ensure that absolutely nothing gets in the way of construction going ahead in 2017.”
Fine Gael councillor John Dolan said: “It has been a long running saga with many disappointments in the past. The conditions in the school are absolutely unacceptable and how this hasn’t been progressed before now is beyond me. But thankfully we have gotten confirmation from the Department, and I would like to put it on record that we want to thank the Minister for his role in progressing this. It is most welcome.”