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North's first state school body becomes operational

Barry Mulholland will head the new Controlled Schools' Support Council
Barry Mulholland will head the new Controlled Schools' Support Council

A NEW body designed to fight state schools' corner has become operational.

The Controlled Schools' Support Council (CSSC) will mirror other sectoral support bodies already in existence by offering professional support and advocacy.

It will be the first time ever the north has had a support body for the state sector.

It had been expected that the CSSC would launch on April 1 last year, the same time as the Education Authority took over from the area boards.

Education minister Peter Weir welcomed its establishment yesterday.

The CSSC will be led by Barry Mulholland, who previously served as the chief executive of the Western Education and Library Board.

"The establishment of the Controlled Schools Support Council will help to address a long-standing deficit in representation. It will place the controlled sector on a similar footing with the other sectors in education," Mr Weir said.

"The new CSSC will ensure the sector has a strong and effective voice. I am confident that they will make a positive contribution in helping to raise educational standards across the controlled sector. This is an important step towards greater equality and fairness in education."