Disappointed local parents are set to lodge appeals after their children failed to gain admission to Dromore High, despite proximity to the school.
The Leader understands that, having hit its enrolment cap, Dromore High was forced to turn away as many as 50 children, for at least some of whom the school is closest to home.
Some are also understood to have siblings already attending the school.
Thousands of primary seven pupils across the province received placement letters on Saturday, May 23, confirming which post-primary school they would transfer to in September.
Lagan Valley MP Jeffrey Donaldson has been working with some of the disappointed Dromore parents as they move to appeal the placement decisions.
Mr Donaldson said the situation further highlighted the need for the High School’s proposed newbuild to move quickly.
In January this year a petition was launched calling on the Education Minister to ensure that the Dromore High School newbuild remained a priority should capital money become available.
“With the recent growth in population in the Dromore area,” said Mr Donaldson, “there is clearly a need for an extension in the number of High School places available.
“The Department of Education has approved the building of a new High School and I will be working closely with the education authority and the Department of Education to ensure this is taken forward as quickly as possible.”
In the meantime Mr Donaldson said he would be working to try and secure places at the school for those youngsters turned away.
“I will be supporting parents and young people to try and secure places for them and discussions are ongoing about this,” he said. “During the normal process of appeals very often places can become available in the mix.”