E-ten­der goes live for St Pa­trick’s Spe­cial School

Enniscorthy Guardian - - NEWS - By PÁDRAIG BYRNE

THERE was more pos­i­tive news for St Pa­trick’s Spe­cial School this week as the etender for the new school build­ing of­fi­cially went live on­line this week.

The De­part­ment of Ed­u­ca­tion has come un­der sig­nif­i­cant pres­sure in the wake of a pub­lic out­cry over con­di­tions en­dured by staff and stu­dents at the En­nis­cor­thy school.

Hav­ing sparked out­rage lo­cally af­ter mak­ing the front page of The Guardian, the ap­peal went na­tion­wide last week when RTÉ News vis­ited the school and showed some of the cramped con­di­tions that staff and stu­dents are deal­ing with on a daily ba­sis.

Prin­ci­pal Lee Rodgers was feel­ing ex­tremely pos­i­tive yes­ter­day (Mon­day) in the wake of see­ing the project listed for ten­der.

‘ This is a re­ally huge step fur­ther along the line,’ he said. ‘I was told a cou­ple of weeks ago that it would be Jan­uary at the very least be­fore we reached this point, so it’s very promis­ing. The amount of pub­lic feel­ing out there in re­la­tion to the school is amaz­ing. From the sec­ond the ar­ti­cle was pub­lished, peo­ple were gen­uinely out­raged by what was go­ing on. We’re de­lighted now to be fur­ther along the line again.’

Min­is­ter Paul Ke­hoe said that he was de­lighted to con­firm that the etender for the new build­ing was of­fi­cially live and looks for­ward to con­struc­tion get­ting un­der­way on this vi­tal project. He said that de­lays were the re­sult of changes to the Pub­lic Works Con­tracts and en­sur­ing ten­der doc­u­ments were in line with th­ese changes. ‘It was un­for­tu­nate tim­ing,’ he said. ‘But it was es­sen­tial to en­sure all doc­u­men­ta­tion was cor­rect and in line with reg­u­la­tions.’

Con­sist­ing of 20 class­rooms, ju­nior and se­nior din­ing ar­eas, a gen­eral pur­pose hall and spe­cial­ist teach­ing rooms, the project is now live on the etenders por­tal and the goal of a March 2018 start date seems to be well on track. It’s not be­fore time for the kids at the school who can’t wait to have some more space to play and a suit­able en­vi­ron­ment to learn.

Prin­ci­pal Lee Rogers at St Pa­trick’s Spe­cial School.

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