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Last Updated: Friday, 31 August 2007, 15:36 GMT 16:36 UK
Pupils in walkouts over closures
Protesters at Craigentinny primary (Pic: Roslyn Gaunt)
Children and parents joined in the protest at Craigentinny Primary
Children at three Edinburgh schools have taken part in walkouts from classes in protest at school closures.

Pupils at Craigentinny, Lismore and Bonnington primaries went on short "strikes" on Friday morning, education chiefs confirmed.

The premises are among the 22 schools and nurseries which Edinburgh City Council wants to shut down.

The local authority said it could not condone any action which caused disruption to the education system.

At Lismore Primary, about 30 to 40 pupils demonstrated for half an hour at the start of the day.

A walkout also took place at Craigentinny Primary in the morning when about 150 pupils protested outside the school before returning to class at 0920 BST.

A further 100 people also demonstrated at Bonnington Primary for 40 minutes during school time in the morning.

This is our catchment school and it is our right to send our children to our catchment school
Shirley Thomson,
Concerned parent

A planned strike at Castlebrae Community High did not take place.

The council has said that falling school rolls mean many school buildings are half empty.

It planned to close 13 primary and three secondary schools in the wake of an Audit Scotland review last month.

Six nursery schools and four community centres are also to be shut.

Shirley Thompson sends three of her four daughters to Craigentinny Primary School.

She said she recognised that the council needed to save money, but closing schools was not the right road to go down.

"This is our catchment school and it is our right to send our children to our catchment school," Ms Thompson said.

children protesting, pic by Deadline Scotland
Children hold placards outside Bonnington Primary

"I have three daughters at this school and to move them now would be very disruptive.

"One is in P6 at the moment which would mean she would have to move for P7 which would really, really upset her and disrupt her education."

Nicola Duffy, 37, a crossing patrol woman with two boys at Craigentinny, said most of the schools' 165 pupils joined the protest.

"The schools they are proposing to send them to are full to capacity," she said.

"This is about the land area that can be sold from Craigentinny - there is a lot of money to be made."

A city council spokeswoman said: "We recognise that parents may wish to make their voices heard but we cannot condone anything that will cause disruption to children's education."

Targeted schools 'not half empty'
30 Aug 07 |  Edinburgh and East
Campaigners fight school closures
22 Aug 07 |  Edinburgh and East
City schools earmarked to be shut
17 Aug 07 |  Edinburgh and East
List of schools to be closed
17 Aug 07 |  Edinburgh and East
Council workers vote for strike
17 Aug 07 |  Edinburgh and East
'It's wrong to close our school'
11 Jan 07 |  Edinburgh and East

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