Merlin Woods Primary School and Coláiste Mhuirlinne/ Merlin College Post-Primary School
24th May 2013
A formal brick Laying Ceremony to mark the progress in construction of a new state of the art educational campus for Merlin Woods Primary School and Coláiste Mhuirlinne/Merlin College Post-Primary School took place on the 24th May, 2013 in Doughiska, Galway.
The final brick in the first phase was officially laid by An Taoiseach Enda Kenny, TD. Board of Management, Student and Teacher representatives of Merlin Woods Primary School, along with Fr Martin Whelan, Diocesan Secretary, on behalf of their school Patron, Bishop Martin Drennan, and members of the DRA Community Development Company attended the ceremony. Coláiste Mhuirlinne/ Merlin College Post-Primary School and its Patron Galway City VEC, were represented at the ceremony by Mr. Tomas MacPhaidin, CEO CGVEC, Councillor Donal Lyons, Cathaoirleach CGVEC, Executive Committee Members past and present and Local Representatives.
Also in attendance was BAM Building who is the main contractor for the school.
The ceremony celebrated a crucial landmark in the process of creating two ultra-modern schools to cater for the educational needs of the area, which has developed rapidly in the last ten years.
Coláiste Mhuirlinne/ Merlin College Post-Primary School will open in temporary accommodation in September 2013. The new school will open in February 2014. The state of the art school with multi- purpose facilities will cater for a large variety of subjects and curricular needs. Merlin Woods Primary School opened in September 2010 in temporary accommodation with 16 pupils, and now has 116 pupils enrolled, with pupils up to 2nd class. It has achieved great success since opening, establishing itself as a school committed to the highest of educational standards. Both schools will enjoy the vast array of inside and outside sports facilities, including playing fields, gym and hard courts. At full capacity, the schools will cater for 1100 pupils, with approximately 100 staff, and will offer the first combined campus of its kind in Galway City, offering pupils a seamless transition from primary to post-primary school.
These schools are two of eight schools around the country being delivered as part of the Schools Bundle 3 Public Private Partnership Project. BAM Building is the main contractor and the Doughiska schools have been designed by architect McCullough Mulvin.
When completed, BAM FM will be responsible for the upkeep and maintenance of the schools for twenty five years, after which the facilities will be handed back to the Department of Education and Skills.
Paula O’Connor, Principal of Merlin Woods Primary School, and John Cleary, Principal Coláiste Mhuirlinne/Merlin College Post Primary School, expressed their delight with the project proceeding to construction phase following extensive planning and for the unique opportunity that both schools will have to work together as they develop. They acknowledged the commitment and hard work of all who had made this day possible since City of Galway VEC first approached the DES in 2004 to seek sanction for the establishment of a post primary school in Doughiska and look forward to the completion of the schools.
Finally, the Taoiseach planted a tree to commemorate the 83 years of education provided by CGVEC to the people of Galway as the VEC makes way for the establishment of Educational Training Boards this summer.