Mr. Joe McHugh TD, Minister for Education and Skills officially opened Coláiste Gleann Lí’s €1.1 million euro extension on Thursday 2nd of May at a ceremony, which was attended by stakeholders and community representatives.
This marked the completion of extensive building works, valued at €1.1 million, by Kerry Education and Training Board, which has extended, refurbished and upgraded Coláiste Gleann Lí- Post Primary School. The extension to the school building will house an ICT/ Creative Arts Centre as well as a host of specialist classrooms ensuring that Coláiste Gleann Lí will be in a position to cater for its rapidly expanding school population in line with the steady and constant increase in enrolments since 2014. The extension also includes changing facilities and flood lighting for the existing on-site astro turf pitch.
Minister McHugh was welcomed by Chief Executive Officer of Kerry Education and Training Board, Mr. Colm McEvoy in the presence of Director of Schools, Ms. Ann O’ Dwyer, Chairperson of the ETB, Mr. Jim Finucane, Principal of Coláiste Gleann Lí, Mr. Richard Lawlor and Deputy Principal, Mr. Liam McGill and Chairperson of Coláiste Gleann Lí Mr. Terry O’ Brien as well as representatives from the Parents’ Council and Students’ Council and local community representatives and groups.
The CEO of Kerry ETB Mr. Colm McEvoy said “Kerry ETB are delighted to host the visit of the Minister of Education and Skills to Kerry ETB at a time when a number of key projects have reached a significant milestone with the opening of the Kerry College of Further Education, Denny Street Campus, the Turning of the sod for the site enabling works for the Gaelcholaiste Chiarraí Campas Nua and the opening of the extension at Coláiste Gleann Lí.
I wish to thank the Minister and his officials at the Department of Education and Skills for their continued support for Kerry ETB. These projects are representative of the ongoing commitement of Kerry ETB to enhance the working and learning environment for our staff, students/lerarners. Kerry ETB has an extensive range of provision across the county including primary, post primary and further education. In addition, I wish to thank SOLAS for their ongoing support for our Further Education and Training programmes.”
Director of Schools, Music and Youth Affairs, Ms. Ann O’ Dwyer expressed her satisfaction with the extension and additional facilities by paying tribute to the characteristic spirit evident in the school. “Colaiste Gleann Lí is a multidenominational school where everyone is valued equally, irrespective of their nationality, their beliefs, their gender, or their background. A lot of work and planning has gone into the design of the extension which includes 2 special classes, a Multimedia Centre and changing rooms for new AstroTurf pitch for Colaiste Gleann Lí. The principal Richard Lawlor and DP Liam McGill have provided great leadership for this project, and made sure it is fully integrated into school life.”
Mr. Richard Lawlor, Principal of Coláiste Gleann Lí welcomed the Minister to Coláiste Gleann Lí on behalf of the school community. He explained that the extension was a validation of the inclusive characteristic spirit of the school. He stated: “This extension marks a sizeable investment in our school infrastructure but it also validates the commitment of our staff to the inclusion of all students which has contributed to a huge expansion in enrolments. The multimedia space in particular celebrates our focus on the holistic development of our students where we offer a student-centered approach where students are respected and cherished for their unique and varying abilities”
Deputy Principal, Liam McGill stated that “Today is a great day for Coláiste Gleann Lí and testament to the hard-work, dedication and vision of Kerry ETB and all our stakeholders. The new extension offers us great opportunity to further the exceptional work of our Staff here at the school in providing all students with an extremely high quality Education- Where all students reach their potential. The Creative Arts Centre will allow us to develop our work in the promotion of the Arts, especially around the areas of Music, Drama and Film; giving our students an added dimension to their Post-Primary experience. The need for additional space is an extremely positive sign of a school that will develop further into the future. We look forward to working with all our Stakeholders as we move forward.”
The Chairperson of the Board of Management Cllr. Terry O Brien, in welcoming the Minister and the opening of the new extension, stated, “The Board and Staff in consultation with Kerry ETB have worked hard in recent years in ensuring that this building project became a reality and we are delighted that this impressive building project is completed. This extension provides state-of-the-art facilities for the school community to enjoy. I wish to thank the Board of Management for their dedication to the school and guarantee our commitment to the continued growth and development of Coláiste Gleann Lí.”
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