Minister announces closure of St Peter’s High School, Derry

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Education Minister, John O’Dowd, has approved a development proposal to close St Peter’s High School in Derry.

Closure will take place on a phased basis with no admissions to Years 8 or 11 in September 2012 and the complete closure of the school from 31 August 2013.

Commenting on the decision, Mr O’Dowd said: “The closure of this school is one of the recommendations outlined in the Strategic Report of the NI Commission for Catholic Education (NICCE) and is reflected in the Western Education and Library Board (WELB) post-primary area plan.

“For over 40 years, St Peter’s High School has played a valuable role in the education of young men from the Creggan area of Derry. However, demographic decline over recent years has, as in many areas across the north, adversely impacted on enrolments, with only 170 pupils enrolled in the school in 2011/2012.”

The Minister continued: “The school Trustees, supported by the Council for Catholic Maintained Schools (CCMS), have put forward a compelling argument for closure and I believe that acting now is in the best educational interests of the young people attending St Peter’s.

“I have approved the Trustees’ proposal of a phased closure to ensure minimal disruption to the education of the children concerned and I wish them all the best in the future. I would also like to pay tribute to all those connected with St Peter’s High School, who over many years have shown their commitment and dedication to the school and its pupils.”