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McHugh calls for end to Buncrana education campus impasse

Minister Joe McHugh

 

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DONEGAL TD Joe McHugh has welcomed an update from the Department of Education on the proposed new Buncrana Education Campus but has called for the land deal involved to be completed quickly.

The project, which has been included in the Government’s capital funding, has been dogged by delays over the purchase of land.

Under the proposals students from Crana College, Coláiste Chineál and Buncrana Gaelscoil will share a new school site, catering for more than 700 students.

Minister McHugh said that while negotiations are continuing in relation to an original site proposal, talks are continuing with landowners in relation to a second site.

“Minister Bruton has informed me that the second set of negotiations are ongoing and it is a suitable site for the campus if agreement can be reached on a purchase price,” said McHugh.

“Officials from Donegal County Council are conducting the negotiations on behalf of the Department and Minister Bruton’s officials are due to meet with the council officials shortly.

“Minister Bruton has told me that he is keen to expedite a site acquisition and that is my view. Parents and teachers have waited long enough for this issue to be resolved.

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“He has also assured me that the project will move quickly to the architectural planning process swiftly once an agreement has been reached. This cannot happen soon enough.”

Minister McHugh said he raises the campus issue with the Department on a weekly basis to check for updates.

“I understand completely the frustration of parents and teaching staff over the ongoing delays,” said McHugh.

“Negotiations are now at a sensitive stage and but I hope that they can be concluded as soon as possible.

“Some of the conditions in the Gaelscoil, for example, are just not good enough in this day and age. All three schools need their own new purpose-built joint site quickly. Everyone has waited long enough.”

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