Company urged to talk to Langholm residents about proposal
CONCERNS have been raised with a Langholm councillor about a proposal by a company to buy the former primary school and convert it into an independent school for troubled children.
Councillor Ronnie Tait told the community council: “There is a lot of concern about it and about the client group.
“You are all aware of the situation at the school and
Greenleaf House, the company proposing to buy it and turn it into an independent school.
“I attended a meeting, called by Denis Male, about it and I asked when the date of entry was and, because of the nature of the business, suggested it should go out to the public.
“The company should get
information to the public
because it has the potential to be difficult, with the school next door.
“They hope to transport eight to 10 kids from Biggar to teach, although the report in the Langholm paper (E&L Advertiser) said they were bringing children from Kilmarnock.
“I have emailed the Langholm Alliance and its chairman Denis Male and the Langholm
Initiative, which had contacts with the company at the start.”
“What are your feelings on this? I’ve had representations from the public which have gone to Gavin Stevenson,
Dumfries and Galloway chief executive, and Oliver Mundell, Dumfriesshire MSP.”
He added: “The public should know what is going on and the education authority should be involved as well because the council could be placing some of these children.
“The company has said it won’t go to the public until it owns the building. It’s been
interviewing job applicants so that seems a bit odd.”
Mark Hodgson said the school was for children with difficult backgrounds and no-one would live there.
The company might buy a property or properties in the area run by full-time care staff.
Margaret Sanderson said she would be very concerned if the company was transporting children such a long distance.
Betty Harkness said the company shouldn’t own the building until the public knew what was going on. They needed to be informed about what would happen and what it would bring to the town.
Robert Dickson, vice-
chairman, said he would speak to their chairman John
Galloway, who was not at the meeting, and ask him to invite a representative from Greenleaf House to a meeting.
Raymond Logan, managing director of Greenleaf House, told the E&L Advertiser last month that he intended to open a day school and move his company’s headquarters into the building.
The children would be brought from the Kilmarnock home.