‘No funding barrier’ to hydrotherapy pool, says principal

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World news

Long-awaited plans to build a hydrotherapy pool at Roddensvale School are to be taken forward by the North Eastern Education and Library Board, it has emerged.

As reported in the Larne Times last week, Education Minister John O’Dowd has approved the Board’s business case for the proposed facility.

However, the project will not be funded by the Department of Education (DENI); instead, the NEELB has been tasked with completing the scheme.

A DENI spokeswoman said: “The Department wrote to the NEELB approving the business case for the hydrotherapy pool.

“As Roddensvale is a controlled school, it is a matter for the Board to consider the progression of the project from within its allocated capital minor works budget.”

Roddensvale Principal John Madden has now written to parents to clarify the funding situation.

He added: “We are now waiting on a timescale for the project to commence.

“We are also awaiting the development of a new wing to replace a double mobile classroom, which currently accommodates those pupils aged 17 - 19 years who are preparing for their transition from Roddensvale.

“This project is also to be funded through the Board’s minor works budget.”

The creation of a hydrotherapy pool has been an aspiration of the school’s board of governors since the new building opened in 2005.

The facility provides a weight-free environment allowing pupils to be free of wheelchairs and enjoy a greater range of muscular movement.