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Glenkens Communities Move Forward on Education & Learning

March saw Dumfries and Galloway Council Elected Members approve a Motion to
halt the mothballing of any secondary schools across the region until a robust policy on mothballing was created that took into account the wider socio-economic impacts of such a decision.

As a consequence, Dalry High School is now confirmed as open for, at least, academic year 2024/25. Any subsequent steps in relation to its future will need to be taken forward in accordance with the policy to be developed and agreed by the Full Council and within the regulatory and legal framework.

The Glenkens & District Community Action Plan Steering Group (CAP SG) was
pleased to note this important decision at its recent meeting, as it recognises the
important role that education facilities play in the future sustainability of a community.
The success of this motion was a great cross-community effort led by Elected
Members that demonstrates how the Glenkens community can and does work
together.

An Education and Learning Forum is being created and they are working to convene
an Education and Learning Summit in the Glenkens in June.

John Paterson, Chair of the CAP SG said. ‘This is a really exciting project which will
delve into the needs and aspirations of a wide range of stakeholders and then work
together to find an effective route map and plan for the future of education and
learning in the wider Glenkens area, from cradle to grave. By thinking about all
stages of education and learning and involving all interested parties, it is our
intention to enable and support great conversations and build a common vision and
plan.

The intention of the Summit is to bring together a wide range of people, from parents
to students to representatives of the Council’s newly titled Education, Skills and
Community Wellbeing department and Elected Members, as well as community,
education and business representatives. An invitation to participate in this work was
sent to Dumfries and Galloway Council on 11 April 2024. By all parties working
collegiately, we can make a real difference to the future of our community and the
people who live here. We have not yet had a substantive response from them.’
The Summit is likely to be in June 2024 – for more details as they arise, contact
Helen Keron, GCAT Executive Manager, on [email protected]

Another excellent piece of news regarding positive steps for education and learning
in that the Glenkens and District Trust has issued an Invitation to Tender for a
Glenkens & District Rural Education Review. The intention of this research is to
enable people in the Glenkens to gain a better understanding of how other similar
communities in Scotland and beyond have responded to the challenges to their
educational arrangements. It is also hoped that a network of interested parties can
be created to further share experiences and support effective education and learning
in rural communities facing similar challenges.

Our Elected Members, Dougie Campbell and Andy McFarlane, whose Motion has
given us time for this work, said ‘We were pleased with the support we have received
from our fellow councillors and are looking forward to working with the Glenkens
community and our other ward councillor, John Denerley, to take this important topic
forward. This community has a proven track record of working together and this is
another example’.