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Rice College Ennis

Ennis school upgrade will allow enrolment to increase

Champion Chatter

AN Ennis secondary school will be able to expand its number of student admissions after the Department of Education gave the go-ahead for a multi-million euro extension.
The development at Rice College will see state-of-the art facilities added to the school campus including 13 new mainstream classrooms and a designated suite providing education and support to autistic students.
Principal Louis Mulqueen has described the development as “a major advance in the post-primary educational infrastructure of Ennis”.
The ability to increase student numbers has been particularly welcomed in light of unprecedented demand in recent years for secondary school places in the county capital, which Mr Mulqueen has described as “a major challenge” for post-primary schools area.
As well as enabling increased pupil numbers, the new extension will also allow for an expanded curriculum and broader services for students with special needs at Rice College.
Following the announcement, Mr Mulqueen said, “Rice College Board of Management welcomes the recent announcement by the Minister for Education, Norma Foley, that a major multi-million euro extension will take place in the Rice College campus in Ennis.
“This development commenced over nine years ago with the prudent purchase of the Riverside building adjacent to the college and now, with the assistance of the Department of Education we will see the provision of up to 13 additional classrooms along with many specialist rooms across a range of faculties.
“By any standards, it represents a major advance in the post-primary educational infrastructure of Ennis.
“Over time, this development will lead to further employment with additional teachers and further ancillary staff in the secretarial, maintenance and catering areas.”
He continued, “Rice College will be in a position to broaden its curriculum and expand its services in the STEM fields of learning (Sciences, Technology, Engineering and Maths).
“The new facilities will also provide for the expansion of services for students with special needs. A designated suite for the provision of education and support to autistic students will be part of the new development.”
The principal noted that the additional accommodation would put the school in a position to expand the number of student admissions from first year onwards.
“This, as many parents will know, has been a major challenge for post-primary schools in the Ennis area for several years.
“This exciting news means that, once the project is completed, Rice College will be in a position to further enhance the already excellent quality of education for our students, and provide improved teaching facilities for current and future staff.”
Teacher and Fianna Fáil TD for Clare Cathal Crowe welcomed the confirmation of the works saying, “This is a mammoth announcement for the school and a huge boost for the teachers and pupils as they begin another school year, following a really challenging period grappling with Covid.
“Rice College has long delivered an excellent vocational education to the young people of Ennis, with an almost 200-year history of teaching behind the walls.”

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