The Dickson Plan has served the north Armagh area well over the past 40 years, the Ulster Unionist Party in Upper Bann has said.
UUP MLA Samuel Gardiner said the Dickson Plan “removed the negative aspects of selection at age 11, allowed late developers to develop, and provided what was in many ways a model school structure which the entire Province would have done well to follow”.
He added: “It has also produced a long record of excellent examination results in what are some of the Province’s best schools. Why it needs to be altered escapes many people in north Armagh including me.
“Support for the Dickson Plan remains vigorous and strong right across the Craigavon area. Recently a consultation performed by the Southern Education and Library Board for the Post Primary Area Plan in the Southern area demonstrated that 83 per cent wanted to retain the system that exists.”
Meanwhile SDLP deputy leader Dolores Kelly has hit out at the Minister for Education for “presiding over a shambles on selection and ignoring a recent consultation on the Dickson Plan”.
“Over the past 15 years we have seen utter chaos reign in the department.”