Minister for Employability and Training Jamie Hepburn MSP, visited Crosshouse Primary School in Kilmarnock this week to meet award-winning modern apprentices who built a sensory facility for pupils with communication disorders and autism.
Modern apprentices from the Morrison Construction supply chain and East Ayrshire Council designed and built the Snow White and the Seven Dwarves themed Crosshouse Sensory Room for the Ayrshire Chamber Modern Apprenticeship Challenge 2017 winning the Developing the Young Workforce Award.
During the project the ‘Hi Ho’ team designed the facility, gained building permissions, excavated a trench for the electricity supply and sourced donated materials from companies to build the sensory room. The facility features a cabin with sensory lighting and a projector opening onto a garden complete with planters made to resemble the seven dwarves’ beds.
Minister Hepburn, was impressed both with the project and the attitude of the young people he met, commenting:
“This is typical of the tremendous range of support for young people happening in East Ayrshire. We are very determined to ensure that we recognise excellence in education and training opportunities, and this project has achieved so much with the provision of such a special and flexible space for the pupils of Crosshouse, and the knowledge, experience and confidence which the modern apprentices have clearly gained through their participation.”
Morrison Construction Community Skills Manager Jim Johnstone, who was instrumental in supporting the project with skills, materials, contacts and advice said: ‘‘It was wonderful to meet Minister for Employability and Training Jamie Hepburn during his visit and see pupils continuing to enjoy these fantastic bespoke facilities.
‘‘The team involved in this project, including apprentices from East Ayrshire Council and our supply chain, should be very proud of this accomplishment.
‘‘The Crosshouse Sensory Room is just one local initiative that has been completed by our employees under our progressive community benefits programme.’’
The facility, which was officially opened in September last year, took the ‘Hi Ho’ team 40 hours to build and is estimated to cost £30,000 in donated materials and labour.