The Manchester United legend took part in an official opening ceremony and unveiled a plaque in the new school building, which includes a state-of-the-art multi-sports facility.
After sharing stories of his early days at Manchester United with the youngsters in a special assembly, Sir Bobby commented:
“It’s an enormous honour to be here today because there are young people of all different ages and they all obviously love sport. This is a facility that would be the envy of most schools in Great Britain, it’s just fantastic. The association you have with Manchester United and the work you are doing here is marvellous.”
Irlam and Cadishead College is one of Manchester United Foundation’s partner schools and has a full time Community Development Officer based there to work with the young people and with the primary schools and community in the surrounding area.
Head teacher, John Ferguson, explained:
“We do a lot of work with the Foundation from the age of eleven, right up to our sixth form and even in the local primary schools as well. We work with young footballers, but it is more than football, it is about education and teaching them life skills. For example, we’ve been doing work on food and nutrition where the kids have been cooking meals that would prepare them for a football match. Lower down the school they’ve been doing movement skills and in the primary schools we are going in to supplement and enhance the PE classes they already do.
“It’s all about using sport and football as a medium to educate and hopefully keep the children as engaged and as interested as possible whilst they are at school.”
Irlam and Cadishead College has been re-built as part of the Governments ‘Building Schools for the Future’ (BSF) programme. The facility, built at a cost of £25million, incorporates state of the art facilities in all areas. The school combines a mixture of traditional and contemporary design, enabling teaching staff to deliver high quality lessons in a traditional learning environment.