Carrick schools to benefit from ‘lasting legacy’ of council

Carrick teachers and principals were invited to the Mayor's Parlour to receive a legacy cheque from the council. INCT 13-055-GR
Carrick teachers and principals were invited to the Mayor's Parlour to receive a legacy cheque from the council. INCT 13-055-GR
  • Trio of events to mark council legacy
  • All 17 schools invited to parlour
  • Donation of £350 each to spend on items or projects

Local schools are considering a range of projects after receiving £350 each to mark the legacy of the outgoing Carrickfergus Borough Council.

Principals from all 17 of the borough’s schools were invited to the Mayor’s Parlour in the Town Hall at the end of March.

The event was part of a trio of projects designed to mark the final days of the local authority.

Speaking at the Town Hall, Deputy Mayor Lynn McClurg said: “As you no doubt will be aware, the Review of Public Administration will see the reduction in councils across Northern Ireland from 26 to 11.

“Carrickfergus Borough Council is amalgamating with Larne and Ballymena Councils to form the Mid and East Antrim Borough Council from April 1, 2015.

“As Carrickfergus Borough Council will cease to exist at the close of business on March 31, elected members are keen to leave a lasting legacy of the current council along the lines of three key themes: celebrating the past, marking the present, and legacy for the future.

“Council agreed that as part of ‘marking the present’, a donation of £350 would be made, along with a plaque and framed certificate for each school in the borough. This money can be spent of items or projects that you feel would benefit your school. I know some schools have already put forward their ideas of how they will use this money.”

At Downshire, the school council will have a hand in deciding how the money will be spent, explained principal Jacqueline Stewart.

“Carrick council have always been very active in involving students in democracy through the junior council and the junior mayor scheme; we’re very grateful for the donation and for everything they have done over the years,” Mrs Stewart said.

Pupils will also have a say in the use of the funds at Carrickfergus Grammar, while an accelerated reading programme designed to boost literacy will be a potential beneficiary at Carrickfergus College.

Meanwhile, a range of projects will be undertaken at local primary schools.

At Sunnylands, there are hopes of using the legacy fund to provide a range of outdoor play equipment, while Woodlawn Primary aims to extend the existing memorial garden to former principal Stewart Bryans.

The donation may be put to use to provide outdoor seating at the rural Woodburn Primary. “We’ll have our new build starting at some point, so we want something that’s going to be separate from that,” explained principal Melanie Craig.

Central Primary School outlined plans to use the funds to purchase new IT equipment. “This will means everyone in the school will benefit,” said principal Glenn Campbell.