€4.3 million secured for new special needs school in Tuam

Galway Daily news Over €75,000 awarded to 11 Galway youth services

St. Oliver’s special school in Tuam has secured €4.3 million for a new special needs school building which is set to begin construction this summer.

Galway East TD Seán Canney has said that the Department of Education has agreed on a preferred contractor for the new special needs school, instructing the design team to issue a letter of acceptance.

The €4.3 million project is expected to commence on site by the end of June with construction estimated to take 18 months to complete.

St. Oliver’s operates under Ability West to provide education for pupils aged 4 to 18 who have a severe to profound learning disability, as well as catering for children with moderate multiple diagnosis, moderate general learning disability, or who have an additional diagnosis such as autism or behavioural difficulties.

The special needs school also has an Early Intervention class for children from 2 ½ to 6 years old with a diagnosis of Autism.

Presently St. Oliver’s has 31 students enrolled at its current facility. The new school building will be located at The Glebe, Tuam and will have a floor area of 2,221 sq metres

Deputy Canney said that this is an “important investment in special education in Tuam” that will give the local area “a first class modern educational facility”.

Sean Canney said that this is the latest investment in improving Tuam’s educational facilities after multiple other investments.

“Tuam now has a new Gaelscoil National School and Phase 1 of the Archbishop McHale Collage is open.”

“The planned merger of the three national schools in the town is progressing with a new 32-classroom school being developed.”

The independent TD added that he wished to “acknowledge the dedication of the School Principal, staff, Board of Management and parents in making sure Tuam and St Oliver’s have the best facilities available.”