13 May, 2010 - Tánaiste opens new Educate Together school in Newbridge

The Tánaiste and Minister for Education and Skills, Mary Coughlan TD, today officially opened Newbridge Educate Together - a new 16-classroom school at the Curragh, Co. Kildare.

The former Sundai Ireland International Japanese School in Newbridge was converted to provide accommodation for Newbridge Educate Together and Gaelscoil Chill Dara at a cost of over €3 million.

The school, which was completed in October 2009, has 16 classrooms, six support rooms, two playgrounds, basketball courts and a general purpose hall.

The school has 205 pupils and a staff of 17.

Speaking at the school today, the Tánaiste said she was delighted to be opening the wonderful new facility in Newbridge.

'This is a special day for education in Newbridge and its hinterland, with the opening of this impressive new school which any community would be proud of.'

The Tánaiste commended the school’s principal, Eimear Carey, teachers, pupils and the local community for working so diligently on this project.

She also praised the school’s commitment to the Green Schools Programme.

'The programme is an international education initiative involving a whole-school environmental management approach.

'In participating, students learn the importance of environmental issues and, more importantly, how to take practical steps in tackling green issues in their school and home lives.

‘Achieving the standards necessary to be awarded a green flag is a significant undertaking by any school.

‘It’s heartening to see the young people here at Newbridge Educate Together carrying out such a very important job in helping to secure the future of the environment,’ said the Tánaiste.

This Government continues to make substantial investment in education with more than €105 million having been directed into capital projects in Kildare since 2007.

The Tánaiste said the investment of €579 million in this year's school building programme demonstrated the Government’s desire to continue investing in the productive capacity of the economy, to create construction jobs and to provide schoolchildren and teachers with the best educational environment in which to learn and work.