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Multi-million pound investment in Jedburgh schools

Deputy First Minister John Swinney at Jedburgh Grammar School today Credit: ITV Border

Jedburgh schools are to benefit from a share of £28 million to create a new campus with sports facilities.

The Scottish Government announced today that a £28 million investment will be shared between four new schools across Scotland as part of the fifth phase of the £1.8 billion ‘Schools for the Future’ programme.

Deputy First Minister John Swinney made the announcement during a visit to Jedburgh Grammar School, one of the schools which will be redeveloped.

The proposals for the new Jedburgh Intergenerational Campus include sports facilities and a community hub, alongside education provision for two to 18 year olds.

We originally aimed to build or refurbish 55 schools across Scotland at the outset of the programme in 2009 and have now more than doubled that commitment. These new buildings will provide children and young people with inspiring learning environments and some also include facilities for wider community benefit and use that will be enjoyed by generations to come. The projects are also a welcome boost to the local economy, creating apprenticeship opportunities for young people and construction jobs across the country.

– Jim Swinney
Headteacher Susan Oliver, Jim Swinney and Cllr David Park with pupils today Credit: ITV Border

During extensive consultations we have carried out with the community, it was obvious that a new campus was required to provide the children and young people with the education and learning experiences that they need. We thank the Scottish Government for their support and look forward to delivering a facility which will prove a real asset to the Jedburgh community.

– Councillor Carol Hamilton, Scottish Borders Council’s Executive Member for Children and Young People

The four new school projects are Jedburgh Intergenerational Campus; Sighthill Community Campus; Underbank Primary School and Walston Primary School.

South of Scotland’s Labour MSP, Colin Smyth said: “Obviously this is very welcome news that money will be spent on upgrading school buildings- especially for the pupils.

“Sadly however there are 4,000 less teachers in Scotland since the SNP came to power. Ultimately it is the teachers that are the real asset to schools and whilst teacher numbers fall so to do our standards.

Scottish Labour would reverse the SNP cuts to schools and not just make investment in the buildings but on the teachers and resources within schools.“

Conservative MP for Berwickshire, Roxburgh & Selkirk, John Lamont said: “It’s hugely welcome that Jedburgh Grammar will finally be receiving some much needed funds to help build a better school for future generations.

“However given the SNP’s neglect of our education system as a whole, a lot more needs to be done.

“This SNP Government has allowed our schools to fall behind in a number of areas, and there are still hundreds of teacher vacancies across the country.

“As such it would be wrong for John Swinney to pretend that this funding will fix all of the problems that have emerged during their time in power.”