Millquarter and Groggan Shared Education Partnership - Building Bridges
Millquarter and Groggan Primary School, are located in rural areas between Toome and Randalstown and are five miles apart. We have been in formal partnership for three years but have established links long before then with both Principals working closely together since their appointments to each school.
Governors are kept informed at each meeting of the progress of the partnership in both schools. Both principals meet regularly to plan, prioritise and support each other in areas much wider than the Shared Education partnership itself.
Coordinators meet to share good practice, plan together and develop the curriculum in the areas highlighted in both schools’ Development Plans. All staff have an opportunity to engage in an informal network of support throughout the year. To date, we have engaged in joint training and Staff Development Days. Resources, ideas and policies are freely shared between both schools in equal measure.
The pupils have benefited from shared classes linked to WAU topics, ICT, outdoor play and music. Firm friendships at all levels, have developed and flourished through the partnership. The children especially enjoy joint trips together, highlights being the Primary One trip on the train to Portrush and our more senior pupils being evacuated to the ‘School at the Sea,’ outside Larne where they were fully immersed in life in World War II.
More recently our joint choir came together to entertain the community for the switching on of the Christmas lights, and they are excited at the prospect of performing together again at the Ballymena Festival.
Shared Education has afforded us the opportunity to further develop the curriculum, resources and provision in both schools, ensuring our pupils are receiving the best experience we can offer. In particular, our Outdoor Play and ICT have been greatly enhanced by the funding of the partnership, through the training of the staff, purchasing resourcing and planning time.
Our partnership motto is ‘Building Bridges’, a reference in part to the bridges of Toome and Randalstown, but most importantly refers to the invisible bridge between each school where a shared and solid community has a strong foundation.
Both schools are indebted to CASE for the funding for our partnership.