‘No guarantees’ that students won’t be worse off if moved – Education
Tuesday 8th October 2013, 12:00PM BST.
NO ABSOLUTE guarantees can be given that the education of schoolchildren won’t suffer by moving them from closing schools, director of Education Alan Brown disclosed to parents last night.
The admission came as Education’s senior civil servants and politicians faced a wave of unrelenting criticism, probing questions and cynicism from St Andrew’s parents and parishioners.
Education minister Robert Sillars even admitted he considered quitting rather than leading the proposals to close both St Andrew’s Primary and St Sampson’s Infant schools – having previously voted against the last attempts to shut them down in 2009 and pledging that he would not support closures while he was electioneering.
Emotions ran high throughout the three-hour meeting, attended by around 200 people, as Education’s motives were questioned and representatives were often heckled, including non-States board member and former secondary school head teacher Denis Mulkerrin, who earlier had highlighted the benefits of larger schools.
Frustration among parents was summed up by one parent, Alasdair McLaren, who said he had expected to attend a ‘professional’ presentation but had been left disappointed.
‘I’m not impressed, to put it bluntly,’ he said.