By RICARDO WELLS
Tribune Staff Reporter
THE Minnis administration has finalised a commitment to construct a new primary school in southwest New Providence, according to Education Minister Jeffery Lloyd.
Mr Lloyd said the government is positioning itself for an aggressive construction and upgrade programme for the public school system, promising that "great relief and great benefit" was on its way.
While his announcement lacked concrete details on price, scope of work and a timeline, Mr Lloyd during an interview yesterday, said the government approved drawings for the project and was now awaiting the possibility of a public-private partnership agreement before proceeding.
"The commitment is that school is obviously urgently needed and will be constructed so that we can relieve the pressures on those primary schools in that area that are bursting at the seams with populations that exceed their capacity," Mr Lloyd said.
"We certainly expect that some decision is near to address their concerns."
Additionally, Mr Lloyd also confirmed that the government was advancing on its plans to construct a new school in Inagua, make significant upgrades to the Eva Hilton Primary School in New Providence and re-examine its outlook for schools in Ragged Island.
With respect to Inagua, Mr Lloyd said: "That school up there was destroyed several years ago and students in Inagua have been operating in less than ideal circumstances - adequate but still less than ideal circumstances."
He said the Ministry of Education viewed its commitment to Inagua as one of its "immediate objectives."
As it pertains to the Eva Hilton Primary School, Mr Lloyd said the government is "ready to go" with its plans for the school.
Addressing efforts in Ragged Island Mr Lloyd said: "As you know the prime minister has indicated that he wants that island to be a model of a green city as it were. One that has the latest in respect of renewable energy, the features of green environment, so that is still in the process of being developed."
He continued: "However, we would consider the replacement of the school in that area, that is a part of the consideration that is in its developmental process right now."
Last summer the Minnis administration oversaw a $4m renovation project at the Stephen Dillet Primary School.
Overall, the government spent more than $8m on school repairs.