D-Day for Clintyclay

Wednesday, 28 June 2017

TODAY (Tuesday) could well prove to be D-Day for Clintyclay Primary School as appeal judges are due to make a ruling as to whether the school should remain open.

An appeal by the Department of Education against a previous court ruling that the school should remain open is due to be ruled on at the High Court in Belfast.

It is 15 months since judgement was reserved by judges considering the appeal, launched by then Education Minister John O'Dowd, against a judicial review which Clintyclay had successfully taken against an original decision by the Minister to close the school.

And the judges' decision will determine whether the school is shut down or is given permission to continue and transform to integrated status.

The school, based in Clonmore, has been in a years-long fight for survival.

After a 'development proposal' was made by the CCMS (Council for Catholic Maintained Schools) to have the school closed, parents at Clintyclay voted unanimously to go integrated.

That would have made the school the first in Northern Ireland to transform from Catholic Maintained to integrated status.

However, Minister O'Dowd proceeded with plans to close the school down.

The school then took a judicial review against the Department of Education and was ruled in favour of two years ago.

That was not the end of the story as the Department challenged that decision and in March last year that appeal was heard, at which judgement was reserved.

It is a landmark week for the school in another regard as long-serving principal Mr Barry Randall will officially retire from his role later this week.


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