Major new setback for St Joseph’s campaign

Flashback to 2014, when parents campaigned for St Joseph's in the precinct.
Flashback to 2014, when parents campaigned for St Joseph's in the precinct.

Campaigners striving to keep Milngavie’s St Joseph’s Primary School open have been left sorely disappointed by a flat Holyrood knockback.

It’s understood the news was passed on by a phone call from a civil servant.

The attempt to remove the school from local authority control and have it run by the community has foundered on a straight rejection of the idea by education secretary John Swinney.

He’s understood to have said that councils still have a central role to play in the running of schools, while the Scottish Government argues reforms will give schools greater autonomy while increasing the role parents have to play in school life.

The controversial proposal to close St Joseph’s and transfer the children to a new shared building on the St Andrew’s site in Bearsden has faced strong opposition from parents and local people.

In March SNP councillors failed in a “last ditch attempt” to spare St Joseph’s Primary School from the axe at a council budget meeting.

The SNP group put forward an alternative to the administration’s budget which included a proposal to scrap all funding currently allocated to building a new merged primary school.

But the plan, which would have meant St Joseph’s remaining open, was rejected by the then Labour/Conservative administration.

There will more on this important local issue in forthcoming editions.