Following a demographic exercises carried out by my Department into the future need for primary and post-primary schools across the country for the period 2019 to 2022 the requirement for new 1,000 pupil post-primary school, to be established in 2019, to serve the Galway City and Oranmore school planning areas, as a regional solution, was announced by the Government.
In October 2018, the patronage of the new school was awarded to Educate Together. My Department has identified the eastern environs of Galway City as the preferred location for the school in order to best serve the combined school planning areas.
The school to which the Deputy refers opened in September 2019 in interim accommodation at Grianach House, Murrough, Merlin Park, Galway City pending delivery of its permanent accommodation.
My Department has provided a level of accommodation to facilitate the school with an intake of up to 48 pupils in its first year.
My Department will be utilising all available space on the existing site to facilitate the required specialist rooms for the school and to allow operation at a continued intake level of 48 pupils as it is expected that the current location will have to accommodate the school for the next two years at a minimum.
My Department approached the owner of an adjoining property, in relation to possible expansion of the school onto that site. However, the owner of the adjoining property has confirmed their property is not available.
In view of the limited capacity on the existing site it is not currently possible for the school to expand its intake level beyond 48 pupils.
In relation to the permanent school site, a zoned site is currently under consideration and discussions are ongoing with relevant stakeholders in relation to the provision of access and services.