Row over future secondary for pupils at Craighead and Lennoxtown primary schools

Kirkintilloch High School 22.4.11 Picture by Jamie Forbes
Kirkintilloch High School 22.4.11 Picture by Jamie Forbes

A public consultation is to be held on secondary school transfers for pupils leaving two East Dunbartonshire schools, but councillors in neighbouring North Lanarkshire have slammed the proposals as “disrespectful”.

East Dunbartonshire Council is to consult residents about the arrangements for children leaving Craighead and Lennoxtown Primary Schools.

The proposals are that pupils of Craighead Primary, which is in Milton of Campsie, would have the option of moving to Kirkintilloch High School rather than the current options of attending Kilsyth Academy or St Ninian’s High School in Kirkintilloch.

Pupils leaving Lennoxtown would be have the additional option of going to Lenzie Academy rather than Kilsyth Academy or St Ninian’s.

Informal consultations launched in May found there was demand for both primary schools to be rezoned to a non-denominational secondary in East Dunbartonshire.

At a meeting of East Dunbartonshire’s education committee on Thursday, September 5, it was agreed to proceed with the formal consultation process, which will include all affected parents and pupils.

Joint leader of East Dunbartonshire Council Andrew Polson said: “I would urge the communities of all the affected schools to have their say on the formal proposals by completing the relevant consultation by Wednesday, October 30.”

The proposals have angered councillors in Kilsyth. Councillor Jean Jones said: “This decision disrespects the pupils and staff of Kilsyth Academy.  “The Academy has always welcomed pupils from Milton of Campsie and Lennoxtown and our communities have long standing relationships and friendships.

“North Lanarkshire Council will stringently defend Kilsyth Academy and the opportunities available to pupils and staff within the school and its connected learning community.”

Another Kilsyth councillor, Heather McVey,  added: “This decision disregards well established and successful cross council boundary working. The report from East Dunbartonshire Council is disparaging of the educational and wider achievement opportunities at the Academy which is completely unacceptable.

“These proposals will have profound implications on the pupils, staff and the wider school community.”

Two public meetings will be held as part of the consulation. The one for Craighead Primary will be held at Kirkintilloch High School on October 1 from 6.30pm until 8pm. The meeting to discuss Lennoxtown Primary will take place at Lenzie Academy on September 24, also from 6.30pm until 8pm.

As of Monday, September 9, the consultation documents will also be available from the council website at   https://www.eastdunbarton.gov.uk/LennoxtownConsultation and   https://www.eastdunbarton.gov.uk/CraigheadConsultation.

The papers will also be available from the Hubs and school offices from Monday.