PUPILS and teachers at Maidens Primary School could be forgiven for wanting the summer term to last a little longer this year as the school celebrated the end of a two-year refurbishment programme.
The project, undertaken by South Ayrshire Council, has seen classrooms re-painted, new energy efficient double glazed windows installed, disabled ramps and a new disabled toilet added, new sinks fitted in bathrooms and the roof fully repaired and sealed against the elements.
New carpets have been laid, the computer room relocated, the building re-wired and a new fire escape installed. Outdoors, a popular new obstacle course has been created and the school garden has been given a make-over.
The ambitious programme of works - which came to just under £700,000 - was carried out while the school was still open, but pupils coped admirably as the fresh new look took shape around them.
Councillor Margaret Toner, the Council’s Portfolio Holder for Lifelong Learning, re-opened the school to full capacity last Wednesday and commented: “The school looks better than ever and that it has remained operational throughout all the refurbishment work is a great achievement.
“Having to concentrate on normal day-to-day school work while the workmen were in working round about you can’t have been easy, but everyone has taken this in their stride with the knowledge that the school was going to look superb at the end – and it does!
“In re-opening the school, I’d like to say a big thank you to the head teacher, all of the staff and to the boys and girls for their patience in putting up with all the disruption. Looking at the school now, it was really well worth it.”
Primary three pupil Leo Stark, 7, said: “We have a bigger room to do more work and activities in and our garden is better as we have an obstacle course now.”
Olivia Marshall, 10, added: “I feel the classrooms are brighter to work in now and they look nicer. The sinks are tidier and the carpets are all different colours. It’s much nicer than it was before.”
Once the official opening was completed excited pupils took to the stage to mark the day with an afternoon of music, singing songs from their recent production of Alice.
Councillor Toner said: “We had a great afternoon of entertainment in the school to celebrate the wonderful new look and one or two of the pupils have already told me they can’t wait to come back from the summer holidays.
“That has to be the best possible endorsement for all this superb refurbishment work!”