Work on the new €5m national school for Coosan is likely to start in May following the appointment of a contractor to the project.
The news was announced this week by Longford-Westmeath Independent Deputy, Kevin ‘Boxer’ Moran.
“I know that for the parents, teachers, and pupils of Coosan National School, this is great news to hear that work is finally starting,” Deputy Moran said. “Over 260 pupils attending the school are currently being taught in prefabs, and I am looking forward to the day when those prefabs will no longer be needed. The project has had many false starts over the years, but the appointment of a contractor brings the new school ever closer to being made a reality in 2017.”
Athlone Senator, Gabrielle McFadden, said: “I personally am delighted. Obviously, as a local politician I am delighted for the town, school, and students. On a personal level, I am happy as it was something Nicky worked on for several years when she was well and able. Then when she became unwell I took it on. I am sad she wasn’t here to see the sod being turned, but I am delighted all the same. It’s great for the staff. They really have been working in terrible conditions for a number of years, so it is a long time coming.”
Mayor of Athlone, John Dolan, said: “This is a long, long time coming. I know it goes back as far as the late Nicky McFadden’s time. You are talking 12 years or more. I know it is badly needed. I visited the school myself in recent times and the conditions the staff and students were working in just weren’t sustainable. So it is great to see the work getting started; it is nothing more than what the staff and children of the school deserve.”
Independent councillor, Ailish McManus, referred to the news as “fantastic”.
“I am sure everybody in Coosan, particularly the parents, are delighted,” she said.
“I just want to commend Deputy Moran for all of his work in getting this over the line.”