Fianna Fáil General Election Candidate, Cllr Cormac Devlin has expressed his disapproval of an application made by the Edmund Rice Schools Trust, patron of Clonkeen College, requesting to dissolve the Board of Management at the College.

Speaking following a meeting held yesterday evening on the matter, Devlin said, “It would be unconscionable, in the absence of any allegation of wrongdoing whatsoever, to dissolve a Board of Management in circumstances where the board believes it is acting in the best interests of the whole school community.

“I have consistently opposed the decision to sell 70% of the land currently available for sporting and recreation facilities at the college. The members of this board are acting in good faith and are conscious of the implications for students and other local organisations that rely on this important green space.

“By law, the Minister for Education must formally approve the dissolution of a school Board of Management.

“Should the dissolution of this board be permitted, I believe that its members would suffer grossly unfair damage to their reputations despite carrying out excellent work to date.

“Therefore, I urge Minister Bruton not to support this application.

He added, “This is an isolated dispute between the board and the patron relating to the improper sale of land, and should be remedied. The Minister must urgently put in place a dispute resolution mechanism to resolve it as a matter of urgency.

“I urge the Minister to appoint a mediator and ensure that all sides sit down for constructive discussion to resolve matters and not to accede to the demand to dissolve the board.”