£2.3m new school building at St Joseph’s Donaghmore to start

St Joseph's Grammar, Donaghmore
St Joseph's Grammar, Donaghmore

A total of £2.36million is set to be pumped into the local economy over the next year during the construction of new facilities at St Joseph’s Donaghmore.

The school is one of 50 across the North to benefit from a huge multi-million pound pool of cash allocated by the Department of Education.

The fund is targeted at replacing mobiles, refurbishment of existing accommodation and the provision of sports facilities.

Approval for the Donaghmore school’s building project was first granted more than ten years ago, and it is estimated the school has spent around half a million pounds in order to maintain its existing facilities.

Last year the school was a new entry to the top of Northern Ireland’s GCSE attainment league after 100% of its pupils achieved five GCSEs including English and Maths at grades A* to C.

Its enrolment has steadily climbed over the last decade from just under 500 pupils to 635. Last year 152 pupils applied to the oversubscribed school, up from 112 in 2012 and 102 in 2011.

St Joseph’s has also undergone a number of changes since the Millennium.

Founded over 90 years ago by the Daughters of the Cross, the Catholic all girls’ school became co-educational in 2003. In 2010 it added an Irish Medium stream.

Enrolment at the school continues to grow progressively and is expected to reach 680 by 2017.