Pupil able to sit test locally after 11 additional places are provided

Wallace High School. Pic by Google
Wallace High School. Pic by Google

Eleven additional places have been provided by Wallace High School to accommadate P7 pupils taking the AQE test.

Last week the Ulster Star were contacted by a concerned parent to say her son was having to travel to Dungannon to sit the examination as there was no room in Lisburn.

On Thursday, Wallace High School Principal Mrs O’Hare confirmed that 11 additional places had been made available at the school. It has been confirmed that one of those places will go to Lisa’s son who will now not have to travel to Dungannon for the test.

A relieved Lisa said: “My son is delighted that he is going to Wallace to do the test. AQE said there were over 400 additional applicants this year for the Lisburn area

“My concern is, if there was 400 this year what provision are they going to put into place for next year, the population is growing. Is there going to be more children put in the same situation.

Obviously there are the two schools that participate in the AQE programme, perhaps it is the case they need to open up other high schools that aren’t grammar orientated.

“For a long term solution, as a parent, ideally I would like the pupil to sit the test in their own primary school. It’s keeping the children in their own environment, you’re taking them to a high school they’re not familar with.”

With another son in P6, Lisa is now concerned that unless something is done, they will have to deal with the same problems next year.

She added: “I’ve a son who is in P6, so faced with the same problems probably next year, that’s why AQE need to be opening up more avenues. For now my thanks go to Paul Givan for all his hard work.”

Confirming eleven further places had been provided, Mrs O’Hare said: “Wallace accommodates 300 pupils for AQE tests in individual classrooms. The pastoral care of those who sit AQE tests in Wallace is important to us and the provision of individual classrooms, we believe, is an important supportive measure. The school has asked AQE to ensure that these places are allocated to children from the Lisburn (or surrounding area) Primary Schools.