The mounting campaign to save small schools across the county resulted in a delegation meeting with Fianna Fáil leader Michael Martin in Glenties on Thursday night ahead of his address to members of the party.
The meeting took place in the Highland Hotel saw members of the clergy, members of boards of management and public representatives all present to take part at the talks. The meeting took place following a series of meetings in Leinster House on Tuesday where Donegal Oireachtas members and educational spokespersons from various parties met with both Reverend John Dean and Father John Joe Duffy.
“At the moment we are awaiting further correspondence from the Taoiseach Enda Kenny and the Minister for Education Ruairi Quinn with a view to meeting with them both. We are meeting with as many political representatives as possible and we are impressing on them the difficulties facing our small schools and our disadvantaged schools due to the education cuts,” he said.
Father John Joe Duffy was satisfied that Fianna Fáil leader, Micheal Martin gave the party a very fair hearing. “We got a very fair hearing from Micheal Martin as we did from all the political representatives that we met. He listened to our case and he said that he would continue to work with us and for us as has other political representatives including Minister McGinley,” he said.
Father John Joe Duffy said that despite the fact that Fianna Fáil leader, Micheal Martin was not in a position to make any promises that he would raise the issue in leader’s debate and use all the processes available to him.
Both Reverend John Dean and Father John Joe Duffy have received correspondence from concerned parents from throughout the county who are supporting them in their campaign. “We are getting an immense response from parents across the county and indeed across the country. They have outlined their immense concern to us and vocalised their huge anger at the educational cuts. Parents are very passionate on this issue and we remain optimistic that parent and people power will overcome and common sense will prevail in the weeks and months ahead. Todays march is only the beginning of a campaign that will continue, it is a very important campaign for the future of our children and the future of rural Ireland.
We will continue to organise our opposition to these cuts on an all county basis,” he said.