Education Minister John O’Dowd visits £3.7m building project at St Joseph’s Grammar School, Donaghmore

Date published: 17 September 2015

Education Minister John O’Dowd has paid a visit to St Joseph’s Grammar School, Donaghmore to see progress on a £3.7m building project.

The investment, funded through the Department’s School Enhancement Programme, will see the school gain four new classrooms and a state of the art sports hall and Drama suite, as well as accommodation for science. There will also be refurbishments and alterations to existing rooms.

Speaking during his visit, Minister O’Dowd said:

“I am delighted to be here today to see that work on this £3.7m project is already well underway. The new accommodation, including the two-storey building for PE and Drama will be state of the art facilities which all the children at St Joseph’s can benefit from, while at the same time providing a significant boost to the local construction industry.

Ongoing investment in our schools estate is essential if we are to continue to provide a quality education. The School Enhancement Programme is an important way of providing much needed work to our schools estate and I am confident that this investment will help in the drive to improve education standards.”

St Joseph’s Grammar School Principal Geraldine Donnelly, welcomed the Minister saying:

“We are delighted the Minster was able to join us to officially start building work on this exciting new project. These new facilities will benefit the entire school and enhance the pupils’ learning environment, ensuring that St Joseph’s is well equipped to deliver the curriculum to our existing pupils and future generations.”

Building work commenced just before summer and the project is due to be completed in September 2016. McAleer and Teague have been appointed as works contractor.

Notes to editors: 

  1. The School Enhancement Programme was announced in 2013 for projects costing between £500,000 and £4,000,000. The programme is targeted to meet the immediate and pressing needs in schools, through smaller scale works, where new build capital works are not deemed deliverable.
  2. The Department of Education’s ‘Education Works’ campaign promotes the value of education. This year’s campaign aims to ensure that parents have information on schooling and that they are aware of the steps they can take to ‘Get Involved’ and support their teenager in achieving good outcomes at school. Watch out for the ads on television, radio and outdoor locations. The campaign highlights the vital role families can play in helping children do well at school and improve their life chances. Visit nidirect for more information or watch the TV ad on the Department’s YouTube channel 
  3. See photos from the Department of Education in our Flickr collection 
  4. Media enquiries to the Department of Education Press Office Tel: 028 9127 9207. Out of office hours, contact the Duty Press Officer via pager number 076 99 715 440, and your call will be returned.

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