Minister O’Dowd visits St John’s Primary School, Gilford

Date published: 22 March 2016

Education Minister, John O’Dowd, has visited St John’s Primary School in Gilford and had a tour of the school.

During the visit, the Minister met with staff and pupils and viewed the accommodation including recent improvements to enhance the security in the main building.

Speaking following the visit, the Minister said:

“I always enjoy visiting schools and speaking directly to staff and pupils at the school. St John’s Primary school has had some work carried out under the minor works scheme and I welcomed the opportunity to see the finished product.”

During the tour, the Minister met with pupils from across the school including foundation stage pupils who took the opportunity to show off the Easter hats they had made. The Minister was also entertained by the school choir.

He said:

“There is a stimulating, happy and caring environment at St John’s that was evident during my visit. Such an environment can increase the confidence of the children at the school and help them achieve their potential to become independent learners.”

In conclusion, the Minister thanked Principal Catherine McCooe for the invitation. He said:

“I thank Principal McCooe, the Chair of the Board of Governors and Father Powell for the invitation and the warm welcome. St John’s Primary School is providing an excellent service to the pupils and families in the local community and this was evidenced in a recent inspection report. I wish everyone well for the future.”

Notes to editors: 

  1. 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 - Education Works for more information or watch the TV ad on the Department’s YouTube channel.
  2. See photos from the Department of Education in our flickr collection.
  3. 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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