Cloven's classy new school

Published: 17 Apr 2012 09:300 comments

Pupils and staff enjoyed their first day at the new £6 million Clovenfords Primary School this week.

Headteacher Alison Sutherland with pupils.

PUPILS and staff at Clovenfords enjoyed their first day of school this week.

And the impressive new £6 million building was given the thumbs up by all - including the oldest former pupil, Bert Naismith.

The 93-year-old from Galashiels was amongst the many special guests on Monday as the red carpet was rolled out.

Bert told us: "It's marvellous. A lot different from the Caddonfoot school I started at in 1923."

Caddonfoot Primary closed last month after 137 years of teaching youngsters from around the Clovenfords area.

A celebration was held on the final day of last term - but headteacher Alison Sutherland admitted her staff were glad to be relocating up the road. She told the Border Telegraph: "The staff and pupils at Caddonfoot Primary have been working in very cramped conditions for a number of years so we are obviously delighted to finally be in our new school today.

"The support of parents, the community, and Scottish Borders Council and its partners has given us the confidence to maintain our high level of education at the school and we look forward to building on this as we go forward in our fabulous new school."

The new five classroom school is situated in the heart of the village, improving accessibility to pupils and the community.

As well as a purpose built nursery, the new building also houses a general purpose room, a multi-use games area, and a larger hall and dining room.

Mrs Sutherland was joined by birthday boy Liam Davidson, who was 12 on Monday, and council convener Alasdair Hutton to officially open the school. Pupils then followed their teachers to their own classrooms, where individual ribbons were cut.

Staff, pupils and guests were entertained in the new games hall with the performance of a song specially commissioned and written by pupils to mark their first day in school.

Director of Education and Lifelong Learning, Glenn Rodger, said: "I am delighted that the children are now in their new primary school in Clovenfords and thanks must go to staff for working hard over the holidays to ensure the school is ready today.

"With the completion of Clovenfords, the Council's programme of refurbishment and investment in new schools across the school estate is successfully drawing to a conclusion, with only West Linton and Duns primary schools still to be completed."

The school's current roll, with nursery pupils, is 78. The new school can accommodate up to 125 to allow for future growth in the catchment area.

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