SCOTLAND’S £1.8 billion Schools for the Future Programme has celebrated a major milestone with construction work starting on the 100th new school involved in the initiative.
Deputy First Minister John Swinney was on hand to cut the turf on the grounds of the new Bertha Park High School in Perth, which has been boosted by £19.6 million of Scottish Government funding and is set to open in 2019.
The programme, managed by the Scottish Futures Trust, was launched in 2009 and will result in the building or refurbishment of 116 schools by March 2020. Some 75 schools have been completed and opened to date.
Mr Swinney said, “We are committed to ensuring our young people and teachers can thrive in modern, state of the art school buildings and our record on improving the education estate speaks for itself.
“We have made fantastic progress and have wonderful, award-winning schools across all parts of Scotland which stand as testament to that – Bertha Park will be an exciting addition to those existing schools.
“I have seen the real difference these buildings can make to the lives of pupils, teachers and parents, as well as the wider communities they serve, and we will continue our efforts to improve the condition of our entire learning estate, from early years through to schools and colleges.”
Gemma Boggs, education delivery director at Scottish Futures Trust (SFT) added, “Our expert management of the Schools for the Future programme is helping all of Scotland’s 32 councils succeed in delivering the very best teaching and learning environments within ever-tightening budgets.
“As well as supporting many thousands of construction jobs, the programme is creating and delivering world-class, award-winning learning environments that not only meet future educational needs but are vibrant community assets as well.
“I am delighted to see the 100th school going into construction. Bertha Park is a shining example of what can be achieved with real cross programme collaboration.”