Disappointment over handling of Anamar School Closure

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Monday, September 28th, 2015
Community
Sinn Féin councillor Terry Hearty has expressed his disappointment with the CCMS for what he described as their ‘lack of consultation’ with the Board of Governors following a letter they sent out to parents regarding the closure of Anamar Primary School.
Sinn Fein's Terry Hearty

Sinn Fein’s Terry Hearty

“I have been at the forefront of the fight to save Anamar for ten years now and I’m deeply disappointed by the way the CCMS has handled this,” he said. “They carried out a consultation over a year ago and since then have made no contact with the Board of Governors until sending out this letter. At the very least they should have presented their findings to the Board and began discussions to find the best way forward from there. “Schools in this area are bursting at the seams. There are students being taught one-to-one lessons in cupboards because there is nowhere else to hold them. We have had accidents at schools because of lack of parking and proper collection facilities. This is the environment the CCMS is attempting to put 30 more pupils in to. “I am telling them today the same thing I told them 10 years ago; that if they are going to close this school then they need to ensure that the proper staff, helpers, space and facilities are available to absorb them in other schools so that no child’s education suffers,” he insisted. “And I would stress that these need to be proper, quality facilities. A wooden hut stuck in the middle of a playground is not the answer to this problem.” Meanwhile Sinn Féin MLA Megan Fearon has secured a meeting with the CCMS to raise these concerns. “I will be meeting with the CCMS on Tuesday to discuss this issue and I’ll be making clear that this is not the way to handle this,” she said. “There needs to be far more consultation with the Board of Governors and if this is the move they are intent on making then they need to ensure that other schools get the funding increases and expansions they need to accommodate more children. Fearon added, “At the end of the day it’s the pupils at the heart of this who are our primary concern so we will work with any statutory body or group out there to ensure that we find the best possible outcome for their education and future.”

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