Craigavon Senior High reaction: Education group accuse DUP of ‘paying lip service to campaign’

Lobby group Education Equality for Lurgan have hit out at the DUP on their stance over the closure of the Craigavon Senior High campus in Lurgan.

Thursday, 15th April 2021, 3:43 pm
Updated Thursday, 15th April 2021, 3:50 pm

Reaction to news an Education Authority report had backed the closure plan, despite opposition from a majority of parents in the controlled sector in the town, the group accused the DUP of paying lip service to keeping Lurgan’s children in the town.

Posting on Facebook on Wednesday the group said: “So today sees the Education Authority continue their attack on the children from the Protestant community in Lurgan. The demographics of the town and the cross community damage their decision will cause completely ignored.

“Again the plan to steamroll forward with their original proposal, while ignoring the wishes of the community. Their plan to shut the Lurgan Campus of Craigavon Senior High School, the only KS4 controlled non grammar school in the area to bus the children to Portadown starting September 2022.

“This decision takes place at the same time as we see two Catholic Maintained Schools within a 10mile radius being built from the ground up to the tune of £70+ million while the Protestant children watch their school close and pushed from their town like second class citizens. This is an absolute disgrace.

“The DUP has paid lip service to the campaign to keep our children in Lurgan.

“A previous Sinn Fein Minister delivered for his community, the DUP is failing theirs. Currently there is a DUP minister in charge of Education who has the final say on this.

“If this school shuts and these children are forced to move to another town to be educated it will be under a DUP watch. They will be totally and absolutely to blame and we will make sure it won’t be forgotten. No longer will they be able to point the finger at a Sinn Fein minister as their minister will be making the call on this.

“The DUP inaction compared to their save the Dickson Plan campaign is in stark contrast. A failing educational system that needs a complete overhaul, a system of education that looks nothing like the original setup that was intended to serve all. It has been manipulated and changed over the years with self interest to serve the grammar schools first and foremost while everyone else suffers. A system the DUP fought tooth and nail to keep and which has now led to the situation we are in today and they are silent.

“You the community also had your part to play but did you have the fight? That is a question you must ask yourself as another resource is ripped from the heart of a once proud community. You can still play your part though, you can demand your MP, MLAs and Councillors put pressure on the Education Minister to reject this proposal, tell them your vote relies on support for your community, that you will accept nothing less than major investment in your children and grandchildren’s future within your own town.

“Once this school goes that’s it, it won’t be coming back and we stand over our claim that over time this will have a detrimental effect right across the protestant community in Lurgan. This fight is on its last legs, if you care make your voice heard.

“DUP we are watching very closely.”

Beattie responds to school closure plan - read hereEditor’s message

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