O’Dowd turns down enrolment increase at Ballymena Academy

Date published: 03 June 2015

Education Minister John O'Dowd has turned down a development proposal for an increase in the enrolment and admission number at Ballymena Academy.

Commenting on his decision, Minister O’Dowd said:

“I have considered the proposal put forward to me in the context of area planning and I have decided to reject the proposed increase to the enrolment and admissions numbers at the school.  I do not believe the proposal has been area plan proofed.  I also have concerns that the school may not be accessible to all the young people in the area, as a result of its admissions policy and charging of school fees.

I am aware that a proposal for Cambridge House Grammar School, Ballymena, was expected to be published late last year but was postponed to allow the former North Eastern Education and Library Board to consider the consultation responses fully.  

Ideally linked proposals for an area should be brought forward simultaneously.  I accept that it was not possible in this instance. However I am required to make a decision on the published proposal for Ballymena Academy.  My decision will provide all concerned, particularly parents and children, with certainty on the position and enable the Education Authority to revisit its plans for the Ballymena area.”

Notes to editors: 

  1. The Department of Education’s ‘Education Works’ campaign promotes the value of education. This year’s campaign aims to ensure that parents have information on schooling and that they are aware of the steps they can take to ‘Get Involved’ and support their teenager in achieving good outcomes at school. Watch out for the ads on television, radio and outdoor locations. The campaign highlights the vital role families can play in helping children do well at school and improve their life chances.
  2. Visit nidirect for more information or watch the TV ad on the Department’s YouTube channel.
  3. See photos from the Department of Education in our Flickr collection 
  4. Media enquiries to the Department of Education Press Office Tel: 028 9127 9207. Out of office hours, contact the Duty Press Officer via pager number 076 99 715 440, and your call will be returned.

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