Speaking at the launch, headmistress Beverly Dobson said she was very proud of the boys, and their hard work had provided the school with a wonderful resource.
The renovated room is a meeting space for parents, teachers and students. Asha Singh, from the school’s art department, said the new facility will be “a nice quiet, tidy space for parents coming in.”
She said: “Sometimes parents can be tense if they’re coming in to talk about problems, but this is a great space to help them relax and talk through whatever has happened.”
Previously, visiting parents would wait at school reception, a situation that student support officer Patricia Mulholland said was “inappropriate, especially if they have to bring smaller children with them.”
Six pupils, aged 12-13, were involved in the project, organised in conjunction with Bow Arts Trust. The boys – Abdul Raouf, Daniel Fisher, Ethan Fletcher, Jaydon Sullivan, Louis Curry and Mark McIntyre – worked with contemporary artist Daniel Lehan, who guided their plans for the space.
Lehan said: “The boys came up with some wonderfully creative ideas, which we talked about and developed in workshops. Everything in the room came straight from them, and they worked really hard to put it all together.”
The finished room has been repainted and decorated with murals, as well as a display wall for rotating pupils’ art and achievements.The boys chose inspirational quotes on the theme of family to paint on the walls, such as ‘Family is the seed from which all growth begins’ and ‘Families are like fudge – mostly sweet with a few nuts’.
The project took over a dozen after-school sessions to complete, with the students also working with the school’s business manager to furnish the room.
The boys were especially keen to provide a play corner for smaller children who might accompany visiting parents.“Sometimes parents can’t come in because they have little kids that would just end up running around,” said 12-year-old Abdul. “So we thought if they had a place and some toys to play with you could bring them in and not get distracted.”
“We’re immensely proud of the boys,” said Singh. “They’ve done really well, they pulled together as a team from day dot. They walked in and they had the attitude ‘We’re here, and we’re in it together’. They all worked really hard, all of them.”