Factsheet 2018

Gaelscoil an Ghoirt Álainn  

Facts: Gaelscoil an Ghoirt Álainn, established in 1993, is a multi-denominational, Irish language medium school under the patronage of An Foras Patrúnachta and affiliated to Educate Together. The school has been in temporary accommodation at Brian Dillon’s Hurling and Football Club since 1998.

Since our school first opened on September 1st 1993, The Board of Management of Gaelscoil an Ghoirt Álainn has fought tirelessly for a new school for the children and families that we represent.

 

  1. Gaelscoil an Ghoirt Álainn was founded in 1993 and has been located in prefabricated buildings beside the Tank Field since 1998.

 

  1. In 2011 Gaelscoil an Ghoirt Álainn was granted full planning permission to build a school on the site as marked out below.

 

  1. Gaelscoil an Ghoirt Álainn is a multi-denominational Gaelscoil under the patronage of An Foras Pátrúnachta and is also affiliated to Educate Together. The vacated “state of the art” school referred to in a recent appeal against planning for our current school building is run under the patronage of the Catholic Church. This school is to undergo MAJOR renovations this summer as it aims is to house another school, also under the patronage of the Catholic Church, in September 2018. Our Board of Management has not been involved in, nor have we been made aware of, any discussions on the idea of our school being relocated to this building. Our school has been granted planning permission to build a new school since 2011. We are at a very advanced stage in this project. The parents, children and staff of our school look forward to their new school building soon.

 

  1. Due to its unique status as both a Gaelscoil and a multi-denominational school, Gaelscoil an Ghoirt Álainn attracts increasing numbers of students from the area. Currently, 360 students are enrolled. Well over 80% of the children attending our school come from within 1.5 miles of the school.

 

  1. Gaelscoil an Ghoirt Álainn has received permission from An Bord Pleanála to build a new school on the adjacent Tank Field. This site has been identified as the best site for our new school since 2002. The Department of Education has identified this site alone as the site for our school and listed our school for development in its 2013 school building programme. The site comprises of 2 acres of an 11 acre site. The Bord Pleanála report stated:

 

‘……having regard to the existing uses of the overall land, to the need for improved educational facilities, the need to replace temporary schoolroom accommodation and noting that the proposed development does not involve loss of any playing pitches….the proposed development would not seriously injure the amenities of the area or of the property in the vicinity….’.

 

  1. Cork City Council voted unanimously in March 2005 to sell this site to the Department of Education and later to allow Brian Dillon’s pitches to move eastwards to facilitate the construction of the school. In 2007, a majority of the council voted to permit the building of a new school on the site. As the necessary 2/3 majority was not achieved, planning permission was granted after an appeal by the Department of Education to An Bord Pleanála.

 

  1. Gaelscoil an Ghoirt Álainn is located in temporary premises. Our premise is no longer suitable for the needs of our school. Many of the classrooms are small, the facilities are cramped and the car park of the adjacent Brian Dillon’s GAA club doubles up as the schoolyard and staff car park.

 

  1. An action brought by some residents seeking a declaration of a public right of way over parts of the Tank Field, which, had it been successful, may have blocked the development of the school, failed at Cork Circuit Court after a lengthy hearing in 2012. Judge Ó Donnabháin’s decision removed any legal impediment to the development of the school on the Tank Field.

 

  1. Alternative sites or buildings have not been made available as potential locations for our new school during the tenure of the current Board of Management.

 

  1. Coiste na dTuismitheoirí of Gaelscoil an Ghoirt Álainn have always fully supported the Board of Management of the school in relation to the location of our new school and have never expressed a preference for any site other than our current site.

 

  1. The development of our much-needed school is GOVERNMENT POLICY, has PLANNING APPROVAL at the highest level by AN BORD PLEANÁLA and attempts at the Circuit Court to hinder its development through establishment of a right of way FAILED.

 

  1. The new school will bring enormous benefits to students and their families, not just now, but for future generations. As an educational facility providing Irish- medium education within a multi-denominational ethos, it is already an asset to the local community.

 

  1. Those who object to the development of a new school claim they are not against our school. Their actions say otherwise- they have always objected to any planning application made by our school; they have objected to much-needed new prefabs to accommodate the growing numbers of local children wanting to attend our school; they have referred the school to the Fire Officer and to various authorities for perceived infringements of planning regulations; they have erected posters at the driveway entrance to the school in a bid to cast our school in a negative light. Those in favour of the school greatly outnumber those that are opposed. The views, needs and interests of local children and parents have never been represented by those who object. Based on their actions, one can only conclude that they wish the school, temporary or permanent, to be anywhere else.

 

Gaelscoil an Ghoirt Álainn

Ag foghlaim le chéile!

 

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