Long campaigned for school extension finally opens
Education Minister cuts ribbon to open new wing of St Brigid's NS, Meath Hill
Minister for Education Norma Foley visited St Brigid's NS, Meath Hill, on Thursday morning cut the ribbon on the school's new extension.
It was a day of great celebration in the community to mark the completion of the long campaigned for extension that brought their cramped classrooms up to standard size, while also providing a new library and offices.
Minister for Justice and local TD Helen McEntee also visited the school to view the new facilities last week.
School principal Anita McCahey explained that all four classrooms in the school were only 40sqm, just half the standard requirement of 80sqm. They had been campaigning for an extension for years and Covid finally brought it to a head with 30 children in one of their small classrooms.
They were overjoyed to finally be approved for an extension in August 2020 and work began in July of last year with PK & Sons appointed as the contractor. The project essentially involved merging four classrooms into two in the existing school and building two new classrooms, offices and a new library in the extension. Ms McCahey explained that they were able to stay in the school throughout the build and said the builder was exceptional. They took occupancy of the new extension in March.
Education Minister Norma Foley cut the ribbon on the new extension and unveiled a plaque. She spent time visiting the classrooms and chatting to the children, who were delighted to get a homework pass for the evening.
Parish priest Fr Finian Connaughton led prayers and blessed the school and photos from the 1930's to the present day from the school were shown. Tributes were also paid to neighbour Michael McConnell who gifted land to the parish which was required for the car park and a presentation was made to him, as well as Minister Foley.
"We made a presentation to Michael as a token of our appreciation. It wouldn't have happened without him," said Ms McCahey.
Also present was the chairperson of the board of management, Sean Egan, and a number of past pupils also called in to see the new building.