responses from other schools in Argyll

from Oban Times facebook wall :-

Keills is in revolt, Luing is planning a campaign, what are you planning to make Argyll and Bute Council listen to your views on their plans for school closures – oops, amalgamations?

and :-

Save Kilmodan School

Is everyone happy that Ardchattan and Barcaldine could close?

For the official line — which includes “Under the proposals 26 primary schools would amalgamate into 20 receiving schools.” so Ardchattan parish is taking one of the biggest hits, as it is expected to lose two of its schools, despite being the largest area parish of Argyll and having the largest popuation; as well as incorporating the school role of the neighbouring parish of Connel.

The document also suggests that ““The council has a clear vision for its education service, and strives to improve the quality of education for all in Argyll and Bute.” So all the wonderful things that Ardchattan and Barcaldine have been doing over the past years is below “ABC” potential standards. hmmmmmmmmmm how many local parents think that ??????

October 27, 2010   Posted in: argyll and bute council, Barcaldine, Benderloch, Bonawe, Children, Community, Schools

2 Responses

  1. editor - October 27, 2010

    to add from the national press
    Council to shut one-third of its rural schools

    Andrew Denholm and Matthew Holehouse

    27 Oct 2010
    A Scottish council has unveiled plans to shut one-third of its rural primary schools in a bid to save £15 million by 2014.

    Argyll and Bute Council is proposing to close 26 of its 80 primaries – including Toward, near Dunoon, whose headteacher Cathleen Russell is the wife of Michael Russell, the Education Secretary. Council officials said the move was a result of the need to cut costs, although they also stressed school rolls were predicted to fall by 19% by 2020.

    However, rural schools campaigners said the closure plans represented an unprecedented attack on the foundation of remote communities.

    The Scottish Rural Schools Network (SRSN) said about half of the schools targeted by the council had healthy pupil numbers and should never be considered for closure. In particular, the organisation attacked plans to close Rosneath, which has 85 pupils, and North Bute, which has 51 pupils.

    The network also singled out plans to close a 19-pupil primary on the island of Luing, which would result in pupils having to take a ferry to a school on the neighbouring island of Seil.

    “We have no argument where councils want to close schools that are virtually empty, but if schools that have 50 pupils or more are being targeted then we are in serious trouble.”
    Sandy Longmuir, spokesman, The Scottish Rural Schools Network

  2. editor - October 28, 2010

    Luing School fight for survival
    Fergus takes his fight straight to the top

    Published: 28/10/2010

    PLEA TO PM: Seven-year-old Fergus Ritchie with the letter he has written to David Cameron asking him to save his school
    More Pictures
    A SEVEN-year-old boy has written to the prime minister asking him to save his small island school from closure.

    Luing Primary School on the west coast is one of 26 facing closure as Argyll and Bute Council struggles to cut costs in the wake of less money from the Scottish Government, which in turn is having its budget cut by Westminster.

    Fergus Ritchie, a primary three pupil, posted his letter to David Cameron yesterday, just a day after his local council announced it was considering going out to consultation on the closure of the schools.

    On hearing the news, Fergus asked his mother, Mhairi Ritchie, chairwoman of Luing Parent Council: “What can I do? Who is in charge? I should write to someone.”

    Fergus wrote: “Dear prime minister, please don’t close the Luing Primary School. It’s the heart of our island and we would miss it very much. From Fergus Ritchie.”

    Fergus said: “The school is really good and we have got two really good teachers called Stephen Glen-Lee and Denise McMahon.”

    Mrs Ritchie said: “He felt so strongly about it and he was so diligent about sitting down and doing it. He asked for a first class stamp so that it would get there faster.”

    The proposal is that the 19 pupils on Luing would go to school at Easdale Primary on the neighbouring isle of Seil, which is connected to the mainland via the famous “Bridge over the Atlantic” near Oban.

    Mrs Ritchie added: “The children would have to make a ferry crossing to get to school. It would be eight miles there and back including the crossing. The furthest away is a boy in primary one who would have to leave his house at 8am and wouldn’t get home until 4.30pm. It would be exhausting for them.

    “They have given us a date of when we could be closing – June 28, 2011.

    “I feel absolutely horrendous. This would rip the heart out of our community. The school is the heart of Luing. If they hold a concert, a Halloween party, a Burns afternoon or a baking sale, the whole community goes along to support it.

    “If the community was to lose the school it would have such a knock-on effect to the future of Luing.

    “There are about 10 people employed at the school, full and part-time. They would lose their jobs.”

    A spokeswoman for the council said that no decisions have been taken yet, with the executive committee due to meet on November 2 to decide whether to go out to consultation on the closures.

    A spokeswoman for Downing Street said they were unable to comment until they received the letter.

    Read more:

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