Plans to re-locate a Lucan community college to a different school 10km in Tallaght have been backtracked by the Department of Education.
It follows an intense backlash by parents, students and locals to the changes which were due to come into place at the start of the new school year.
Griffeen Community College, which is currently based in the Kishoge Community College in Lucan, was told that from September 2020 students would be sent to Kingswood Community College in Tallaght.
A letter shared by the school’s board of management described the plans as “very disappointing and upsetting”, with locals in both Lucan and Tallaght voicing their anger at the decision.
A meeting was planned last night to evaluate the change, but as it was due to take place it emerged that the Department of Education had u-turned on the decision and would reevaluate the school’s location.
Last night the Department confirmed to Dublin Live that it was open to discussing the school’s future with the Dublin and Dun Laoghaire Education and Training Board and school management and principals.
A Department of Education spokesman said: “The Department will re-evaluate options to accommodate Griffeen Community College in September 2020 and remains open for discussions with DDLETB and local school management and principals.”
The letter issued to parents in full:
“I am writing to inform you of the most recent news we have received regarding plans for temporary accommodation for GCC for September 2020. I am very disappointed and regretful that I must share this news with you.
“As you are aware we have been housed here in Kishoge CC since our opening in Sept 2017. I have been informed today by the CEO of DDLETB that the Department of Education has decided that we will be accommodated from Sept 2020 in Kingswood Community College in Tallaght for 12-24 months.
“As this time we are not aware of the exact logistics of how this will work but we have been informed that students will be bused from Lucan to Kingswood and back again each day. The Department will fund the buses. Once further information comes into our possession we will share this with you. Kingswood Community College is another DDLETB post primary school with over 600 students currently enrolled. We will share accommodation in their new build.”
The letter describes the news as “very disappointing and upsetting” with the GCC board of management understanding that they would be moving onto the nearby Carline site.
It continued: “Given the fact that a general election has just been announced can I please ask you to express your dissatisfaction and concern regarding this decision to election candidates as they call to your door.
“Having witnessed the wonderful learning that is taking place here in our school and how our students are flourishing in our relational environment, I know that you realise what a setback this is for GCC, but we endeavour to ensure that students continue to progress and flourish.
“The whole GCC community has invested a huge amount of positive work into our school, and whilst this is not wasted in any way, our potential growth will be hindered by these new plans. Again I apologise for bringing you this news, but it is obviously beyond our control. Please rest assured we will do everything we can to ensure the positive future of GCC.”