Belfast Telegraph

Pupils protest against plan to shut Fane Street Primary School

By David Young

Children and parents from Fane Street Primary School in Belfast took to the streets yesterday afternoon in protest at plans to close their school.

More than 50 people staged a protest which brought a major traffic route to a standstill.

The multicultural protesters lined out across Tates Avenue carried placards saying 'Hands Off Our School' and 'Save Fane St Primary'.

Parents at the school have been outraged by plans to close Fane Street and amalgamate its pupils with Blythefield School in Sandy Row and Donegall Road Primary School.

The school closure proposal hit the headlines earlier this month when Patrick Yu of the NI Council for Ethnic Minorities said that the merger plan could result in "Holy Cross Mark II" by exposing Fane Street ethnic minority pupils to racist attack on their way to their new school.

Around 64% of Fane Street pupils are from immigrant families, and a third are Muslims.

Mr Yu has since apologised for his remarks.

Fane Street currently has 239 pupils.

Famous past pupils of the school include Northern Ireland international and Chelsea striker Tommy Priestley and legendary singer Ruby Murray.

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