‘Give us an alternative to Option A’

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The SELB are willing to listen to “alternative proposals” to Option A according to a letter circulated to schools this week.

In the correspondence, Mike Donaghy, head of development, planning and support services, said the SELB was committed to consulting schools on Option A.

Significantly Mr Donaghy said that during the extended consultation period, the board will “continue to engage with interested parties, including local representatives, who may wish to suggest viable alternative proposals”.

Mr Donaghy concluded: “The board remains committed to the principles of the Dickson Plan, and to delivering the best possible education for the young people of the area.

“The board confirmed that no definitive decisions have yet been taken as to that future provision and that it will reflect carefully on the outcomes of the consultation.”

Yesterday (Wednesday) new SELB interim chief executive Gavin Boyd and board chairman Plunkett Campbellmet Lurgan College principal Trevor Robinson and his Portadown counterpart Simon Harper. Mr Robinson said the meeting was to seek clarification on the recent letter and convey deep concerns of the community about Option A.

Dickson Plan campaigners continue their fight with a rally tonight (Thursday) at the civic centre organised by MP David Simpson.