A primary school in Blacon once deemed desperate for repair has been transformed into ‘something to be proud of’.
Highfield Community Primary School held a grand unveiling of their new multi-million pound home on Thursday, January 14
With the children as enthusiastic guides, guests were shown around every inch of the building and its facilities.
Headteacher Nicky Dowling said: “It’s my absolute privilege and pleasure to say I am the headteacher of this amazing school.
“We have amazing staff, children and community here at Highfield.
“Sometimes a new building can feel like exactly that, but ours already feels like a welcoming place to learn.”
Funding for the modernisation was supplied by a £2 billion government fund for schools across the country in urgent need of repair.
It was announced the primary would be getting an upgrade back in May 2014.
Sheriff of Chester Councillor Alex Black was on hand to cut the ribbon and officially open the school.
He said: “These are exciting times for the children of Blacon and it’s great to see Highfield leading the way in the regeneration of schools.
“We were delighted to grant planning permission for this project, so much hard work had gone in to this over the past few years and this is the result.
“The children, families and staff are at the heart of it and hopefully will be for years to come.”
A single-storey building has replaced the old, out-dated Highfield.
The pupils themselves were heavily involved in designing how their purpose-built classrooms, which first arrived in February last year, would look and feel.
Year 2 teacher Holly Martin said: “It’s just made such a difference, especially for the children and really it’s them who make the school.
“They are always bouncing around the room and are so proud of it.”
The Priority School Building Programme will also support improvements at Blacon High , JH Godwin Primary and Dee Point Primary.
Blacon councillor Reggie Jones said: “When you look at the fantastic transformation which is going on in our schools in Blacon it gives confidence to parents.
“It also provides a modern learning environment for our pupils and gives them something to be proud of.
“You come into a school like this and it inspires the children and also inspires parents too.”
Pupils now have access to a modern dining area, assembly hall and sports pitch as well as a library area complete with tablet computers.
Ms Dowling said: “It’s nice to be able to show everybody Highfield is a special place.
“All credit to the staff and the children for their hard work for all their hard work in the run up to this evening.
“I think the biggest thing the children have noticed are the open-plan areas which enable them to use the space much more freely.”
Pupils’ designs line the classroom walls and a print of a doodle by children’s laureate Chris Riddell in tribute to school hangs outside the hall.
Head of governors Fiona Whiteway said: “It’s been lovely this evening hearing the compliments and seeing how excited and proud the children are to show everyone round the school.
“This has given us a home for Highfield in which the children can thrive and flourish.”
What do you think of the new school? Does your child attend Highfield Community Primary? Let us know in the comments below.