Sinn Féin delegation meet Farry on threat to St Mary’s
Martin McGuinness MLA led a Sinn Féin delegation to meet with DEL Minister Stephen Farry over funding threats to the future of St Mary’s Teacher training College in West Belfast. The delegation included Junior Minister, Jennifer McCann, MP Paul Maskey and West Belfast MLAs Alex Maskey, Rosie McCorley, Fra McCann and Pat Sheehan.
Speaking after the meeting West Belfast Sinn Féin MP Paul Maskey said:
“The fact this delegation was led by Martin McGuinness is a sign of the importance we attach to the contribution of St Mary’s to education across the North and just how serious Sinn Féin views the threat to remove the £1.1 million Special Premia allowance from the Training College.
"We had a full and frank discussion. We impressed on the minister, the strength of opposition to these plans being expressed by the community in west Belfast and across the North who rightly value St Mary's as an educational Institution.
“We requested that the minister reinstate the Premia, pointing out the importance of St Mary’s to West Belfast and the North in general.
“With 1,000 students and 160 staff – as well as being an educational institution the importance to the local economy is substantial.
“We will continue our discussions with the minister over the coming weeks in an effort to reach a positive resolution to this issue.”