New primary school to open soon

2020-01-28 06:01
Washington Drive Primary School will accommodate 240 children for the first intake.

Washington Drive Primary School will accommodate 240 children for the first intake.

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Officials have begun the process of appointing temporary teachers for a new school, set to open early next month.

Construction started at the site of Washington Drive Primary School in Colorado Park last year, with furnishing and classrooms almost complete.

A total of 240 learners will start at the school in February.

Ricardo MacKenzie, parliamentary head for Mitchell’s Plain, says they are keen to have the school open.

“Some of the children that will attend the school are already at other schools. We want to have the school open so that they can move and open places for children on (other school’s) waiting lists. We want this to happen as soon as possible because once children are at home for too long and get used to getting up at 10:00 or later, then we may lose them,” he says.

“There are so many good schools in Mitchell’s Plain and we are excited to open this school because parents don’t want to have to drive to other areas – they want the best, closest to them.”

Ward 75 councillor Joan Woodman agrees and says the school will directly assist in school placements for the immediate and surrounding areas.

“The provincial department of education had an overflow of learners that registered in February 2019 and were placed on a waiting list. This is where the need arose to build the new school,” she says.

The appointments were made through the interim school governing body for Grades 1, 2 and 3 with interviews having taken place on Saturday 25 January. The interim governing body was elected on Monday 20 January. The school currently consists of temporary buildings to accommodate two Grade 1, two Grade 2 and two Grade 3 classrooms.

“In next year as the learners progresses to the next grade, two more Grade 4 classes will be accommodated. A date has not been set as to when the school will be built. Currently we will be accommodating children in the beautiful pre-fab building,” says Woodman.

“A school for the Colorado area has been on the business plan since the inception of Colorado Park and was well driven by the previous Colville Ratepayers’ Association. As residents would say they have been asking for a school for the last 30 years and at last it’s being implemented. I have been working very closely with the residents’ association, circuit manager and interim principal in getting things in place to get the school started as soon as possible,” says Woodman.

“I am very excited as the ward councillor, together with the interim governing body, to embark on this new endeavour in serving our community and granting our learners the opportunity to enhance their education in this new and fresh environment.”

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