THE Department of Education and Skills has confirmed that the intended interim location for the Le Chéile Secondary School will be on the grounds on one of the pitches of Ballincollig GAA Club.
The Department intends to lodge a planning application to Cork City Council for the temporary accommodation in the immediate future.
A Department of Education spokesperson told the Echo:
“The Department of Education has agreed terms with Ballincollig GAA club to use one of its pitches to accommodate the new Le Chéile Secondary School on an interim basis pending delivery of their permanent accommodation.
“This will be subject to planning permission being secured. The next stage in this process is that the Department will shortly be lodging a planning application to Cork City Council for the temporary accommodation needed for the school to commence operation in September 2021.”
The Department of Education has also confirmed it is currently in negotiations with regards to sourcing a permanent site for the new secondary school in Ballincollig.
“The Department is in negotiations in relation to a potential permanent site for the post-primary school in Ballincollig.
“Due to commercial sensitivities, the Department cannot comment further on this matter at this time.
"The Department will also keep the school patrons informed of any key developments.”
The proposed new post-primary school which will come under the patronage of Le Chéile Schools Trust is due to open in September 2021.
It was initially designed to cater for up to 600 pupils, however, on consideration of emerging demand it has been determined that the size of the school should be increased to have the potential to cater for 1,000 pupils.
Councillor Colm Kelleher is pleased progress has been made.
“I welcome the statement that the post-primary accommodation issue is being actively accessed. I know they are in advanced stages for a permanent site. There are commercial sensitivities that we must respect.
“The new secondary school will alleviate the huge pressure on the current secondary schools in the locality. It will also further enhance the strong reputation the current schools have for providing top-quality education,” he said.
Cllr Kelleher said that sourcing a site for the Gaelscoil an Chaisleáin primary school in Ballincollig remains a key priority.
“We need to expedite the primary school site because they are currently at capacity and come September they will be taking in another class again.
"I have been in contact with the Department to secure a site for Gaelscoil an Chaisláin. The Department has confirmed they are in advanced stages for that.”