THE town’s Roman Catholic school will share a head teacher with three others in the Borders, including a school more than 30 miles away.
The proposals for a single head teacher among St Margaret’s, on Buccleuch Terrace, its namesake school in Galashiels, as well as St Joseph’s in Selkirk and Halyrude in Peebles, were rubber-stamped by council officials at a meeting today.
Concerns have been raised about the proposal but the authority said it was necessary to tackle recruitment issues.
The prospect of St Margaret’s being seen by parents of prospective pupils as a single-teacher institution with a dwindling roll is a source of concern for those linked to the school and the Catholic church. While the church has backed the single head teacher arrangement only on a pilot basis, Father Kevin Douglas, of Ss Mary and David church on Buccleuch Street, said in a previous interview with the Hawick News that the loss of the school would represent a “tragedy” for the town.
Fr Douglas said: “St Margaret’s has served Hawick for generations and has made a real contribution to the richness of Hawick’s civil rights.
“It would be a real tragedy for the town if that were ever to be discontinued. The school has a distinguished history, and a number of generations who have made a real contribution to Hawick have gone through it.
“It offers an education that is underpinned by Christian values.”
The parents of some pupils have suggested that the job may prove too big for one person to take on, but the council insists action was necessary after recruitment problems with head teachers and “varied performance” in inspections prompted a review of how they were run.
A consultation exercise on the proposals was carried out by the council in late-2012.
More in Friday’s paper