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Airdrie School Merger Plan Gets Green Light


The planned merger of two Airdrie schools has now been given formal approval from Holyrood.

North Lanarkshire Council was informed that there will be no Scottish ministerial “call-in” regarding the amalgamation of neighbouring Dunrobin and Petersburn primaries.

Learning and leisure convener Jim Logue, the Airdrie Central councillor, said: “I’m delighted that another hurdle is overcome in the process from contemplating to delivering a new school.

“Hopefully tenders for the work will be returned fairly soon, and we’ll move on to the next stage, of design and then planning application.”

Dunrobin and Petersburn’s merger was agreed by councillors on the learning and leisure committee in February, with the two schools due to come together in an £11 million new building at the former’s current site as part of the Schools and Centres 21 upgrading programme.

It followed both a formal consultation a year ago – which resulted in plans being dropped to merge St Dominic’s and St Edward’s, and for the construction of a joint campus school opposite New Broomfield – followed by an informal consultation on revised proposals affecting five schools across Airdrie, which were ultimately given the go-ahead.

The Scottish Government’s school infrastructure unit last week wrote to Andrew Sutherland, North Lanarkshire’s executive director of learning and leisure services, noting that no representations had been received in the statutory three-week objection period, and that the council was considered to have complied with required consultation procedures.

It gave the go-ahead for the council to “implement its decision to (merge the schools) in line with the timescales set out”; which could see youngsters move into their new classrooms in 2017.

The Dunrobin and Petersburn project is part of the latest phase of the local authority’s schools improvement scheme – which will also see Carnbroe and Sikeside primaries merge and move to a joint campus with St Stephen's, a move agreed last year.

Neighbouring Tollbrae and St Edward’s primaries will have a new joint campus constructed at their current site, while it had already been agreed to construct a new building for St Dominic’s, a month before the school was devastated by fire.

Councillor Logue added: “I’m sure these will be excellent schools; we do individual designs, and I hope local residents will see them not just as educational facilities but as community assets.”