Happiness expert opens Hartlepool primary school's new £400,000 nursery

The ribbon has officially been cut on a new £400,000 nursery at a Hartlepool primary school designed to give children the best start in life.

Saturday, 7th March 2020, 8:00 am

A new purpose-built nursery has been created at Jesmond Gardens Primary School for two and three-year-olds after a need for greater early years provision in the area was identified.

It was formally opened by Shonette Bason-Wood, an international speaker and award-winning author.

Jesmond Gardens headteacher Philip Pritchard said: “This new building gives us a unique opportunity to ensure that the youngest children at Jesmond Gardens Primary School receive an outstanding start to their education.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

Shonette Bason-Wood prepares to cut the ribbon on Jesmond Gardens Primary School's new nursery building with headteacher Philip Pritchard (left) and representatives from Cole Construction and Bryal Consultancy.

“The new building provides a wonderful learning environment that matches their needs and has been welcomed by the whole school community.

“Shonette is passionate about about education, especially early years so she is absolutely the right person to open the building.”

Hartlepool Borough Council identified a need for more places for two-year-old children in the area and helped the school to apply for funding from central government’s Conditional Improvement Fund.

The new nursery, which opened its doors in January, provides the equivalent of 26 full time places for three-year-olds and 16 new full time equivalent places for two-year-olds.

Shonette, pictured with Early Years Leader Laura Gray, unveiled a plaque to mark the building's opening.

Mr Pritchard added: “We wanted to get the children in earlier. We’re very lucky to get that money.

“We’ve had lots of comments from parents. On the first day when the children came in they were open-mouthed with wonder.”

Shonette, who emphasises the spreading of happiness through her work, led fun activities with the youngsters and unveiled a special plaque during her visit this week.

Cutting the ribbon she said: “Thank you for having me at Jesmond Gardens. To me this is a standing out school in this community.

Shonette led fun activities with children in the nursery during her visit.

“What an amazing place for children to thrive in Hartlepool.”

Representatives from Cole Construction and Bryal Consultancy which built the new building also attended the opening ceremony.

Jesmond Gardens’ Early Years leader Laura Gray added: “I am so thrilled with our new building and the children are thriving in their brand new and stimulating environment.

“We are so lucky.”