The contract was signed this week for a €170,000 extension to Emly National School.
Construction work on the long awaited extra classroom will begin over the next few weeks, Emly NS Principal Pauline Finnan told The Nationalist.
The construction company JJ Carr signed the contract for the project yesterday (Tuesday).
The school, which celebrated its 100th anniversary in 2010, will have to adhere to specific planning regulations that require the front of the new classroom to be faced with cut stone in keeping with the original stone school building.
Ms Finnan said it had taken a long time for the project to reach this point and the school’s board of management was deeply appreciative of the effort of its engineers Procad and local Fine Gael TD Tom Hayes over the last few months to bring to this stage. The school was recently approved a €170,000 Department of Education & Skills grant to build the new classroom.
The grantwas €70,000 higher than originally approved by the Department after a year of representations and negotiations with the Department, said Deputy Hayes.
He said the school was originally granted €100,000 for the classroom extension but it became clear that this money was not going to be sufficient.
“As a listed building Emly National School was forced to comply with a number of planning regulations that increased the cost of the project significantly.
He stressed that the increase in costs was completely out of the school’s control.
“Understandably, given the strain on financial resources at the moment, the Department was reluctant to provide the school with the necessary finances.
“However, I am glad to see that common sense has now prevailed and the staff and students of Emly National School will soon be able to use their new classroom once the works are completed,” added the TD.