Nicola Sturgeon MSP led the opening of a hat-trick of new schools today, as the total number of new or refurbished schools reached 751 since the SNP came to office in 2007.
The First Minister opened the new Largs Campus on the same day that Deputy First Minister John Swinney MSP opened Dundee’s new Baldragon Academy and Education Minister Shirley-Anne Somerville MSP opened Edinburgh’s new Boroughmuir High School.
All three projects are supported by the SNP Government’s School for the Future programme, with the new Largs Campus including Largs Early Learning Centre, Largs Primary, St Mary’s Primary and Largs Academy.
The SNP Government’s Schools for the Future programme will deliver 117 new schools of which 87 are now open, with the rest to be completed by 2020. A further 664 schools have been refurbished to date. The First Minister said:
“I am pleased to officially open these tremendous new Largs Campus buildings. It’s clear to see that the pupils and staff are all enjoying and benefiting from their new learning environment.
“This is just the latest of the long list of schools now rebuilt or refurbished, with a hat-trick of schools being officially opened today. That’s a reflection of the importance of education as this government’s number one priority.
“Not only do these new schools provide enormous benefits for the education of our children and young people, they also help the local economy with jobs and apprenticeship opportunities during construction, serving the wider community once open. I have no doubt this will also be the case here in Largs.”
Added Kenneth Gibson MSP:
“I am delighted that of three official school openings today, the First Minister chose to open the magnificent new Largs Campus.
“The campus really is quite magnificent, built in partnership between the SNP Government and North Ayrshire Council, whose officers have dedicated themselves to this project over months and years.
“All evidence shows that enhanced learning facilities improve school morale attainment and the enjoyment of a school both by pupils and staff. The state-of-the-art Largs Campus can only further improve the outcomes of what were already excellent and high attaining schools.”
Largs Campus received £25.3 million of funding under Scotland’s Schools for the Future programme; Baldragon Academy £19.5 million and Boroughmuir High School £17.2 million.
The proportion of Scottish schools in a good or satisfactory condition has increased from 61% to 86% since 2007.
The £1,800 million Scotland’s Schools for the Future programme involves £1,130 million of SNP Government funding, with local authorities contributing £665 million.
At least one new school project is being delivered in every Scottish local authority area.
Since 2007, 751 school building projects have been completed.