Pupil power! Decision to close Clintyclay Primary School overturned

ClintyClay Primary School.INTT1613-130ar.
ClintyClay Primary School.INTT1613-130ar.

A controversial decision to close the first Catholic Primary School attempting to transform to integrated status has been overturned in the High Court.

The historic Clintyclay Primary school had fewer than 30 pupils, but expressions of interest for next September had risen significantly as the school began its journey towards integrated status.

However, Education Minister John O’Dowd decided to approve a development proposal by the Council for Catholic Maintained Schools to close Clintyclay.

The parents of a child at Clintyclay Primary School then took the minister to court over his decision to close it, claiming that the process was flawed.

Delivering his findings on the judicial review today (Friday), the judge criticised the CCMS for providing ‘erroneous’ financial information to the department of education to support their closure proposal.

Therefore the department’s judgement was also ‘erroneous’ said the Judge.

A packed public gallery containing parents and grandparents of pupils, as well as supporters reacted with jubilation at the news.

“We are all over the moon and very much relieved”, said one of the campaigners.

“We now hope to take this decision forward and ensure the school’s survival.”