There were celebrations and smiles in Millennium Integrated Primary School as it received confirmation that a new multi-million-pound build on the current site of the primary school would take place.
The decision was taken by the Department of Education and approved by the Department of Finance as part of the Fresh Start Agreement money that was promised to Integrated and Shared Education.
Millennium Integrated Primary has been providing integrated education in the Carryduff and Saintfield areas since opening with just 10 children in September 2000. The school moved to its present site in 2003 and continued oversubscription led the school to going to double enrolment in September 2013. In September 2019, the school’s enrolment will be 365 children in the primary with another 52 children in the nursery school.
Welcoming the news, principal Barry Corrigan said:
“These are exciting times for integrated education in the Saintfield and Carryduff areas. The announcement of the new build reinforces the provision in the area and should firmly establish Millennium Integrated as a school for the two communities. We have been very fortunate to have a committed school community supporting us from our very foundation and the building of a new primary school with the nursery unit validates the unique work that is being done in Millennium.
“It is my vision to help design and create a school that is fit for the 21st Century and to meet the needs of all children in the 21st Century. I would like to be able to work with the staff and school family to create a legacy in a building that we can all be proud of.
“Ever since we were recognised as a Microsoft Showcase School, I have been fortunate to work with many educators from around the world and to draw inspiration and ideas from them in how to meet the educational needs of children in the 21st Century. We hope to continue that partnership with the company as we begin to meet with our design teams. In fact, we were able to bring the teaching staff to the new European Headquarters in Dublin in August to draw inspiration for educational ideals and ideas on working environments and practices. This is something I hope to repeat in the coming months with more staff as they help shape the new buildings.’
“The school has grown in its reputation since opening its doors in 2000 and the founding principal Mrs Mary Roulston was awarded an MBE for her services to Education in the Queen’s New Year Honours’ list, recently.
“The school has worked closely with Northern Ireland Council for Integrated Education (NICIE) and the Integrated Education Fund (IEF) over the years and without their support Millennium might never have grown to the place where it finds itself now – on the cusp of state of the art buildings with an enthusiastic staff and design team ready to go.”
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