Minister commits to resolve Coláiste Feirste transport
Sinn Féin MLA Carál Ní Chuilín and Gerry Kelly have welcomed a commitment from Education Minister John O’Dowd to resolve the transport needs of North Belfast students attending Coláiste Feirste.
Speaking after a number of parents took part in a walk from North Belfast to Coláiste Feirste to highlight the need for dedicated transport to the school, Gerry Kelly said:
“Carál Ní Chuilín and I told those parents we would bring their concerns straight to the minister and I am pleased to say we had a very positive discussion with him.
"The Minister fully recognises the concerns of parents and gave a firm commitment to work towards a satisfactory resolution.
“The Minister also stressed that he is very aware of his duties to promote and facilitate Irish medium education. Indeed, this has been demonstrated by the fact that he recently put in place a greatly enhanced transport package for a significant number of Colaiste Feirste pupils.
"We would now like to see a similar initiative for pupils who live in North Belfast.
“We are aware that this issue is currently being explored by the Department of Education’s Transport Review which is due to conclude in the coming weeks and Sinn Féin will be making a submission to the review team in support of the North Belfast pupils.
“We believe the conclusion of the review can provide the impetus to reach a satisfactory resolution which meets the needs of the pupils and we will continue to work closely with parents, the minister and his department in order to achieve that."