The flagship Lisanelly Shared Campus, a key commitment of the Programme for Government and model for the Government’s delivery of ten shared campuses, will now officially be known as the ‘Strule Shared Education Campus’.
Executive Ministers visited Omagh to launch the new name and conduct a tree planting ceremony. Deputy First Minister Martin McGuinness and Finance Minister Arlene Foster joined Education Minister John O’Dowd to witness the tangible and visible progress being made to deliver education and societal benefits for the entire community in Omagh.
Six local schools will be part of the campus, due to be completed by 2020. It will bring together around 4000 pupils with representation from the controlled, maintained and voluntary sectors. Each school will be able to maximise the opportunities provided through collaboration and sharing while maintaining their own identity and ethos.
Lauri McCusker, Director of the Fermanagh Trust which administers the Rural Centre for Shared Education said “Seeing progress being made at the Strule Shared Education Campus is a very welcome development. T:BUC’s Shared Campus Programme provides schools with a unique opportunity to develop shared education facilities which result in a social and educational dividend, promoting and enhancing community relations. This is especially true in Omagh due to the amount of pupils involved and we have no doubt it will provide a model for other communities across the country. We look forward to further announcements including the proposed Brookeborough Shared Campus.”
The Shared Campus Programme is contributing towards the OFMDFM ‘Together: Building a United Community’ strategy by delivering on the commitment to create ten shared campuses. The programme compliments the work already underway on shared education and is targeted at infrastructure projects aimed at improving or facilitating sharing initiatives within local schools.
It provides the opportunity to bring together a range of schools and aid shared participation in classes, sports and extra-curricular activities. To date three projects have been successful in securing funding for a shared campus. Schools who applied to the second round are currently waiting on a decision by the Education Department.