Oakwood Integrated Primary School, in Dunmurry, is celebrating the news that it will be able offer statutory nursery education next year, after the Department of Education announced that the existing playgroup could become a nursery with 26 part-time places.
Oakwood IPS was established in 1996 with support from the Integrated Education Fund and has run a voluntary playgroup and children’s centre since 2001, Oakwood IPS and its playgroup are annually oversubscribed, and with new housing being developed in the area there is likely to be further pressure on local pre-school places in the near future.
The change from voluntary playgroup to nursery will mean a streamlined funding and management process for the school from pre-school through to P7, and will also offer better access to support services for pre-school children such as those with Special Educational Needs.
Principal of Oakwood IPS, Clare Howe, said
“We are delighted to announce that approval has been given for a statutory nursery unit to be established at Oakwood Integrated Primary School. A huge thank-you to the entire Oakwood community for your support of this development proposal.”
The children’s centre is currently housed in mobile accommodation which is coming towards the end of its life. The Board of Governors will now work to replace the existing building so that opening of the nursery, in improved facilities, will take place in September 2019.
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