Long-term supporter of Integrated Education and entrepreneur, James Hagan, Chair and Founder of Hagan Homes, paid a special visit to Integrated College Glengormley on 30 November.  Having donated over £1m to the Integrated Education Fund (IEF) for the growth and development of Integrated schools, this visit was an opportunity to see firsthand the impact of his generous support.   

Grants from the IEF, funded by James Hagan’s donations, have supported the development of sports opportunities and assisted parents with school uniform costs at the rapidly expanding Integrated College Glengormley.  The ‘Integration Through Sport’ programme enabled the College to avail of two rounds of funding towards developing sporting opportunities, as well as providing school uniform support for their most disadvantaged pupils through the ‘School Uniform Grant Programme’.

Integrated College Glengormley only transformed to Integrated status in September 2022 and is just starting out on their journey of integration.  The school has gone from strength to strength, growing from 650 pupils to 1,100 since starting the Transformation process about four years ago. 

Ricky Massey, Principal of Integrated College Glengormley said:

“We were delighted to have James Hagan come visit the school today.  As a school who has recently undertaken the process of Transformation to become an Integrated school, we are constantly looking for ways to further embed the ethos of integration within the school.  Without the support provided by the ‘Integration Through Sport’ programme, we would not have been able to offer the variety of sporting opportunities to our pupils.  We are extremely thankful that this programme has enabled us to weave integration into another important aspect of school life.  

In the current cost of living crisis the ‘School Uniform Grant Programme’ has never been more important.  This grant helps schools to provide financial support to pupils whose parents or guardians are struggling financially to meet the rising costs associated with their child attending school.  

We are thankful to Hagan Homes and the IEF for the support which is enabling us to continue to grow and develop, offering an excellent education to all our pupils, on our journey to integration.”

James Hagan was delighted to have the opportunity to see the effects of the two grant programmes in Integrated College Glengormley, saying:

“It has been a pleasure to be here at Integrated College Glengormley today, to see Integrated Education in practice, in the day to day life of the 1,000 pupils being educated side by side in this school.  I have always been an advocate of Integrated Education.  I think it is wrong that so many children are still divided into different schools according to their religious and cultural backgrounds and the impact of that division can have financial and societal implications not just in our immediate future but for generations to come. 

The IEF is the backbone to making sure opportunities are there in educational settings that bring our children together.  It is the voice and the supporter of the cause and any funding that goes to this drive can only help shape a better society here in Northern Ireland.  Hagan Homes are honoured to be able to support them on that mission.

I know that our continued support will enable the IEF to continue to support this much needed, vital work and have every confidence they will continue to drive our communities forward.”

The IEF’s Head of Campaign, Paul Caskey OBE, commented:

"It was wonderful to have James visit Integrated College Glengormley.  It is so important that our generous supporters have a chance to see how their support has been put to good use.  Hagan Homes’ support has enabled further integration within Integrated College Glengormley through a broader, inclusive sporting programme which reflects the heritage of all the communities attending the school.  This is reflective of Integrated College Glengomley’s hard work to create a fully inclusive ethos at the College.  It is all about giving pupils an experience they might not otherwise have had. 

The support for the 'School Uniform Programme' demonstrates Hagan Homes' commitment to assist parents struggling in the current economic climate, and it makes a huge difference to the lives of those who access it.  We are extremely grateful for the support of Hagan Homes and look forward to continuing to work together to develop and grow Integrated Education in Northern Ireland."

If you would like further information on Transformation, please see:  www.integratemyschool.com