The future of education in St Ninians, Stirling, looks bright as work gets underway on a new primary school. The first sod was cut a special ceremony on site attended by councillors, school children and Scottish Government Minister for Learning Dr Alasdair Allan. Also in attendance were representatives of Hub East Central Scotland who are leading the project and builders Robertson Construction Central. While the school’s existing Victorian section will be retained and refurbished to provide a dedicated home for the nursery class, primary school pupils and staff will be accommodated in a new two-storey building. Here a wide, flexible “school street” will allow break out from classrooms for small group learning while more flexible dining, social and PE spaces will provide better facilities for larger whole school events including assemblies and school shows. The £8.2 million development cost is being funded jointly by Stirling Council and the national Scottish Schools for the Future programme. It’s just the latest in a round of recent projects Stirling Council has spearheaded with hub East Central Scotland to to improve the school estate. In June work began on a whole new St Margaret’s Primary School and nursery for Cowie. Vice Convenor of Stirling Council’s Education Committee, Councillor Margaret Brisley, said: “St Ninians is a school very much at the heart of the community and it’s great to see work beginning that will ensure this position is maintained for years to come. “Outstanding education is a combination of great teaching, engaged parents and excellent facilities that maximise the opportunities for excellent learning experiences. The new school building that will be created here will enable all of this to be achieved.” Convenor of the Finance and Economy Committee, Councillor Neil Benny, also attended the sod cutting at St Ninians and added: “Parents rightly expect the best for their children and that is something this Council is fully committed to providing both here in St Ninians and across the whole of our school estate.” Minister for Learning Alasdair Allan said: “I’m delighted I could be part of the ground breaking ceremony which marked an exciting milestone for the new St Ninian’s Primary School. “The Scottish Government has worked closely with Stirling Council to help improve its school estate and I’m pleased we could provide almost £5 million in funding towards this project through our Scotland’s Schools for the Future programme. “The new school will be a fantastic environment for pupils to learn in when it opens next year and will provide modern facilities the whole community will enjoy for generations to come.” Chief Executive of Hub East Central Scotland, Gary Bushnell, said: “We have worked closely with Stirling Council to bring the project to this milestone and look forward to the school providing excellent facilities for pupils and staff.” Robertson Construction Central Managing Director, David Cairns, said: “We’ve spent several weeks clearing and preparing the site and it’s great now to be able to start work on delivering this new school for the community who we’ll be working closely with throughout the build. “We’re looking forward to creating a development that will provide a fantastic educational experience for pupils.” The new build is scheduled to be completed next autumn.