Belfast Telegraph

Dodds attends consultation on Newtownabbey-Monkstown school merger

By Rebecca Petticrew

Nigel Dodds MP attended the public consultation meeting held on Monday afternoon, October 21, in Newtownabbey Community High school about proposals for the merger of the school with Monkstown Community School.

"I have been working with the Principal, Mr John Lewis, the staff and the Board of Governors of the school for a very considerable time and share the great disappointment and frustration at the decision to site the new merged school away from the current Rathcoole site," he said.

"There are a number of very good reasons why the new school should be located at the NCHS site, not least the fact of the adjacent Whitehouse Primary School and the proposals for a new 3G pitch. There are excellent links with the local community and first rate transport and logistical connections. Very importantly, recent inspections have demonstrated tremendous progress in pupils' results."

There are also a number of issues about the process surrounding this decision which need to be explored.

I am supporting the parents and the school community in their wish to have the location of the merged school changed. I urge everyone concerned to write to the Department of Education to argue for the new school to be located at the Rathcoole site. The consultation period lasts until mid-December."

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