LOSSIEMOUTH IS TO have a replacement High School by March 2020 following a major funding announcement by the Scottish Government on Monday.
The school has been named as part of a £230million investment that forms the final stage of the £1.8billion ‘Schools of the Future’ programme funded jointly by the Scottish Government and local councils.
First Minister Nicola Sturgeon made the announcement at Queen Margaret Academy in South Ayrshire, one of 19 schools in Scotland that will either be refurbished or replaced in the final stage of the programme.
The First Minister said: “This ambitious plan will replace older schools across the country with new, modern buildings that will bring benefits to the whole community.
“We had planned to build or refurbish 55 schools across Scotland, these new schools now take the total to 112 – more than double our original target. Since 2007, we have worked with local authorities to rebuild or refurbish 607 schools, resulting in the number of children educated in ‘poor’ or ‘bad’ condition schools falling by 60 percent.
“This infrastructure investment programme has already generated an estimated 11,000 construction jobs and 230 apprenticeship placements. Now as these further developments begin construction we will see a further boost to the economy right across the country.”
Lossiemouth High School was identified as a priority by Moray Council in October 2014 when the local authority successfully bid for funding to replace Elgin High School and refurbish four primary schools in Buckie, Elgin, Lossiemouth and Forres.
Lossiemouth-based councillor John Cowe, who is chairman of the economic development and infrastructure services committee at Moray Council, said he was “delighted” at the news: “I am obviously delighted at the announcement of a new High School for Lossiemouth.
“It is great news for the town, the headmistress Mrs Brown, the deputy heads, dedicated staff – and of course all the pupils.
“The state of the art facilities will take teaching and learning to a new dimension in Lossiemouth for a generation to come and with the announcement of greater expansion at RAF Lossiemouth with a further influx of personnel, it will be a huge bonus to the area.”
SNP Opposition Education Spokesperson, Councillor Mike Shand, also welcomed the announcement, saying: “This Scottish Government funding for a new Lossiemouth High School is extremely welcome and a huge boost for both Lossiemouth and for Moray.
“Combined with the investment in Elgin High School this represents tens of millions of pounds in vital education investment.
“The announcement by Nicola Sturgeon makes it abundantly clear that investing in the future of our children is the SNP’s number one priority.”
Moray’s MP, Angus Robertson, also welcomed what he called “great news” from the Scottish Government: “I am absolutely delighted that the SNP Scottish Government has made this announcement to enable another major infrastructure investment here in Moray.
“A new Lossiemouth High School by 2020 will be great news and coming on top of other major school investments like the new Keith Primary and the new Elgin High School due to start construction in the next few weeks.
“In addition we have seen many tens of millions invested in protecting communities with vital flood schemes. This is great news.”