Patience is a tree whose root is bitter, but its fruit is very sweet. Over five years after a new 24-classroom school was first promised to Gaelscoil de hÍde in Fermoy, construction work on the greenfield site off the Duntahane Road is finally expected to commence in the coming weeks.
While Cork County Council granted planning permission last month, a step warmly welcomed by all connected with the school, the decision preceded a four-week period where objections could be made to An Bord Pleanála. Thankfully, no individual or group objected to the planning permission – much to the delight of pupils, staff and parents.
With the last obstacle cleared, it is hoped that machinery will be on site by the middle of March. The prospect of pupils and staff being in the new school by Christmas remains a strong possibility; the New School Action Group said this week.
“The construction of this new facility in Fermoy will be life-changing for the children and of massive benefit to our town and its people.”
It’s chairperson, Vivienne Dempsey praised those who have worked ‘tirelessly’ to see the project arrive at this point.
“The combined efforts of parents, teachers and management at the school in brining us to this point have been immense. We would like to especially acknowledge the tireless work of school principal Sean MacGearailt who pushed this project on whenever it stalled and left no stone unturned in the pursuit of its delivery. He led a united and resilient school body and all, including our 410 pupils, should be proud of their efforts,” she told The Avondhu.
Ms Dempsey said the new facilities soon to be available to pupils will allow them to thrive and allow their teachers – already delivering an excellent standard of education on a daily basis – to plan and do their work without concerns about class size, safety and resources.
“For the first time the toilet facilities will be appropriate, children won’t have to be educated in cramped attic space or portacabins and road safety issues for children coming to and leaving school will be completely reduced.
“In short the construction of this new facility in Fermoy will be life-changing for the children and of massive benefit to our town and its people. Now we just hope that the building can commence as soon as possible. It’s time to take the champagne out of the ice buckets!”, she added.