Limavady town in County Londonderry has started the construction of a shared education campus that will see Limavady High School and St Mary’s High School share the new buildings being constructed for their science, technology, media and drama classrooms.
According to the proposed development plan, which was approved in 2014 by the Department of Education, the two schools will remain separate but will be able to share some classes and facilities. The project, which has taken seven years to formally begin, is expected to take about two years before its completion.
Shared education campus in Nothern Ireland
Shared education campuses are not a new idea, and they enable students from different backgrounds and schools to come together share facilities that their schools do not have.
Education Minister Peter Weir commended the commencement of work on the shared education campus by calling it a significant milestone for both schools. He continued by highlighting that, once the project is completed, it will offer the much-needed education benefits to students, staff and the wider community.
He also expressed optimism that the shared facility would promote good relations between students in Limavady.
Darren Mornin, principal of Limavady High School, also expressed his gratitude for the project, calling it an investment into the future of the children in the region. He also commended the pace at which the project was progressing, expressing happiness that they had been the first project to commence work out of the three projects that had been approved in 2014.
The students from both schools have been coming together since the 1970s for some classes and extra-curricular activities, with Limavady High School offering drama while St Mary’s High offered work to pupils.
The new development will also be one of the few engineering post-primary education engineering suites in Northern Ireland.