A new Parent and Afterschool Centre has been opened today in Kilcooley Primary School and Nursery Unit, Bangor. The facilities were funded by a £282,000 Department for Communities (DfC) investment through its Neighbourhood Renewal Investment Fund with the project being delivered by the Education Authority.
Speaking at the opening, John Ball from DfC’s Community Empowerment team, said: “I am delighted to be here today in Kilcooley Primary School to officially open this new Parent and Afterschool Centre. This much needed facility includes space for interaction with parents and their children, as well as providing space for delivering dedicated programmes.
“This facility is the culmination of a real team effort with many individuals and organisations in this area. Partnership working is vital to projects like this coming to fruition and I thank the Principal, Board of Governors, Education Authority and contractors for all their hard work.”
The new facility has provided a platform to allow parents the opportunity to meet in a non-intimidating environment with other parents, key members of staff and other professionals who can support parents to help them overcome challenges in their lives that may prevent them engaging in education themselves or supporting their children in education.
It also allows for the delivery of various parenting courses and afterschool provision to complement the extended schools programme.
Pauline Brown, Principal Kilcooley Primary School and Nursery Unit, said: "The Board of Governors, staff, parents and pupils of Kilcooley Primary School and Nursery Unit are delighted that the Department of Communities chose to fund this amazing project. The addition of two parents’ rooms will make a huge difference to our parental engagement programmes and to local community involvement.
“Our pupils, staff and parents have a wonderful school entrance and new facilities which has rejuvenated this part of the school building. The investment demonstrates the high value placed on education by this Neighbourhood Renewal area and will increase our pupils’ aspirations.”
Glenda Hall, Head of Service Education Authority, said: “Today is an exciting day for pupils, parents and staff of Kilcooley Primary School and Nursery Unit. The Parent and Afterschool Centre is a fantastic example of how working together benefits not only our school children, but parents and families too. Parents who are engaged in the life of the school contribute so much to their children’s progress and this new facility opens up opportunities to provide a range of vital support services for parents.
“I would like to pay tribute to the various partner organisations who made this project happen, including the Principal and staff of Kilcooley Primary School, the Department for Communities and all those who support the school.”
Notes to editors:
1. The Department has provided £282,000 through the Neighbourhood Renewal Investment Fund. The Education Authority led and delivered the project. The project completed on 31 March 2019.
2. The enrolment at the School is 180 pupils, this new facility addresses the previous inadequate provision of such space.
3. For updates on the Department for Communities follow us on Twitter - @CommunitiesNI
4. For media enquiries or images please contact the DfC Press Office on 028 9082 3532 or out of office hours contact the duty press officer on 028 9037 8110.
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