Fears for future of Southend school

Campbeltown Courier opinion.

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There are fears that Southend Primary School could be permanently closed due to a declining school roll.

The Courier understands that at its June 10 meeting, Argyll and Bute Council’s Community Services Committee will be asked for permission to mothball the school.

The council is then expected to go through the formal process of closure as per the Schools (Consultation) (Scotland) Act 2010.

Councillor Rory Colville said: ‘While I understand a letter has gone out to parents, no decision on closure can be taken until a comprehensive consultation has taken place with the local community. I believe such consultation will explore all options, including the need for keeping facilities local.

‘Education provision plays a key role in attracting new, economically active families that are required to halt the decline in our rural depopulation.’

Councillor Donald Kelly said: ‘As someone who secured capital funding to have the school building refurbished, and who fought on two occasions to prevent closure, this is a very sad day indeed.

‘Unfortunately, falling school rolls are a big problem in many rural areas throughout Argyll and Bute.

‘In order to help sustain our rural communities, I have been continually asking the housing associations to consider building new houses in villages such as Southend, which would have helped attract young families to the area. Sadly, this has never been done.’