A new state high school in Laagri, near Tallinn was declared ready for pupils Wednesday, one day before the new academic year began.
Taavi Vilba , headmaster of the new school, the Saue State High School (Saue Riigigümnaasium), said: "The cooperation with the architects, Eventus Ehitus and Riigi Kinnisvara's project managers has been very strong."
"We were fully involved in the process of building the school - our thoughts and feedback were listened to seriously, discussed and taken into account. A good example of this is the dining hall, or the computer classrooms, which became even more functional for students. I am sure that the building with its exciting space and technological solutions will provide plenty of inspiration for learning and teaching. We are most grateful," Vilba continued, according to an education ministry press release.
The school is the third of its kind in Harju County, the most populous region of Estonia, and the 17th in the country as a whole.
Education minister Tõnis Lukas (Isamaa) said: "The spaciousness at the Saue State High School, and also its environment, which offers the options for separation where needed, gives students the opportunity to realize their most important talent – that of finding their own talent. The movement towards more state high schools has just gained a new jewel."
Andres Laisk (Isamaa), mayor of Saue municipality, called the school's opening an important landmark for the entire municipality and one of the supporting links of the education system.
He said: "Although the school is of course open to all applicants from outside the Saue municipality, it is like a kind of roof over all the seven elementary schools in the Saue municipality, which hopefully can connect young people from different corners of the municipality."
"We would like to see that for at least 70 percent of our primary school graduates, the school would be the first choice for continuing on to upper secondary education, offering a diverse and modern education. This is also a major challenge, and a yardstick for the elementary schools in our region, to stay competitive and provide strong elementary education so that our young people can get a place at the Saue State High School," Laisk went on.
The school's construction cost €6.51 million (plus VAT), financed both by EU Regional Development Funds (in the case of the school) and from Saue Municipality (in the case of the sports hall).
Kati Kusmin , board chair at state real estate firm Riigi Kinnisvara board, said that one of the most important aspects of the state high school is the environment that supports studies, and also noted the Saue school's energy-efficient environment.
The 4,500 sq m facility can host up to 540 pupils (322 are enrolled for this academic year) and 45 teachers, and is situated in Laagri, around 15km from central Tallinn.
Constructed by Eventus Ehitus, the school consists of two complexes, on Veskitammi 24 and Kooli tn. The building was designed by the BOA firm.
Editor: Andrew Whyte
Source: Ministry of Education and Research