Local councillors have rounded on those behind a break in at a local primary school.
Thieves broke into St Joseph’s Primary School in the early hours of Wednesday morning with around 70 items of IT equipment stolen, including iPads and computers.
Councillor Roisin Lynch condemned those responsible and said the staff and pupils at the school have been left “utterly devastated” by this crime.
“The use of IT, computers and iPads in schools has helped so many children reach their full potential by offering new and innovative teaching methods,” Cllr. Lynch said.
She added: “Those responsible for this crime have robbed the children of St Joseph’s of that advantage. Their selfishness has directly harmed the children’s educational experience and they should be ashamed
“St Joseph’s was only just starting to return to normal after asbestos was found and treated over the summer and it is unfair that they should now be put through more disruption.
“It also forced the school to cancel the Grandparents Day they had planned for today which the children were really excited for.
“I encourage anyone with any information regarding this crime to contact the PSNI immediately.”
Councillor Annemarie Logue said those responsibe had “deprived an entire community of much needed facilities”.
“These laptops and computers are essential in the teaching of our children who have now been deprived of much needed equipment,” Cllr. Logue said.
She added: “St Joseph’s School like all schools are facing tight budgets and are now having to look at replacing this equipment and repairing the damage to the school.
“Not only is this an attack on the school but is an attack on the entire community who use the school.
“I would appeal to anyone who has any information or is offered a computer or laptop in suspicious circumstances to report it immediately to the PSNI.”
Meanwhile, South Antrim MLA Trevor Clarke said he was disgusted at attack on the school.
“With 50 ipads and approximately 30 laptops stolen, left the school in a vulnerable position as these devices are used daily to educate their pupils,” Mr Clarke said.
He added: “These cowardly burglars haven’t just stripped the school off money, but they have stripped the pupils of their education with these devices no longer provided for students who require them.
“This is a serious incident, as schools are meant to be safe environments for staff and children and therefore it is important for these burglars to be caught and brought to justice.
“Thankfully with the great help of staff and parents, the school was reopened the next day.”