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Mother's bid to relocate school clears first hurdle

By Alan Erwin

Published 17/11/2016

Education Minister Peter Weir
Education Minister Peter Weir

A legal bid to relocate an Irish language primary school from a 115-year-old building in west Belfast has cleared the first stage.

The mother of a pupil at Gaelscoil an Lonnain was granted leave by the High Court to seek a judicial review of Education Minister Peter Weir's decision to turn down the proposed move.

Her lawyers claim the DUP MLA acted irrationally and failed to comply with a duty to develop Irish medium education. She is seeking a court order for Mr Weir to either authorise the relocation or review his decision.

The school has around 60 pupils and has been at its current site on the Falls Road since 2004. But it is no longer fit for purpose, the mother's lawyers said.

Last year, the school's board of governors submitted a plan to the Department of Education to move to the former site of St Comgall's School.

But the proposal was turned down, with issues over school's sustainability understood to have featured in the decision.

Leave to apply for a judicial review was granted yesterday without full argument.

Belfast Telegraph

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