School to get £240,000 upgrade
ASSEMBLY and PE indoors will no longer mean teachers turning furniture shifters when a tiny village school is transformed by a £240,000 project.It will also mean the youngsters at Easton primary – one of the county's smallest schools – can eat together at lunchtimes as for the first time they will have a hall, a space most schools take for granted.
ASSEMBLY and PE indoors will no longer mean teachers turning furniture shifters when a tiny village school is transformed by a £240,000 project.
It will also mean the youngsters at Easton primary – one of the county's smallest schools – can eat together at lunchtimes as for the first time they will have a hall, a space most schools take for granted.
But the school needs to raise cash for the project – and everyone will be getting in on the act at a drama and revue evening, while acting headteacher Jane Docherty is preparing for a sponsored parachute jump.
County council planners are being recommended on Thursday to give the go-ahead for the project at the 76-pupil school.
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It will provide a hall, classroom, modern toilets and storage space.
Mrs Docherty said initially the school had wanted to provide access for disabled people as it currently has one pupil who is confined to a wheelchair and the school is not disabled-friendly and wants to ensure it meets new regulations.
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"The education authority spoke to us and suggested that we might go the whole hog and deal with a number of issues which needed attention – particularly the need for a hall," she said.
"At the moment the children have to eat in the classrooms, and if we hold assembly or need to have PE indoors, it means we have move the furniture.
"Fortunately, we have a lot of fair weather days in Easton so the children can do PE outside most of the time, but there are activities on the curriculum such as gymnastics and dance which do need to be done inside.
"We are all very excited about the project and really looking forward to it."
The school has to raise around £15,000 of the cost of the scheme itself, and also raise a further £50,000 from grants and sponsorship from businesses.
With the help of parents, there have been a range of fundraising events so far – and more are in the pipeline.
"Being a small school, it is harder because we have fewer families and parents to call upon to help with the fundraising," said Mrs Docherty.
"Providing we have got the funding, we would like to be able to make a start during the school holidays."
Mrs Docherty is preparing to do her bit for the fundraising appeal later this month by jumping out of a plane in a tandem parachute jump.
"It is something I've always wanted to do and I am really looking forward to it," she said.
The school is also holding other events, including a drama and revue evening for parents, and a sports evening.