Northern Ireland news

Kevin Lunney makes first public appearance to help launch school business link

QIH director Kevin Lunney and First Minster Arlene Foster at the launch of the partnership between QIH and St Aidan's in Derrylin. Picture by Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker

KEVIN Lunney has made his first public appearance since his abduction and torture to help launch a new school and business venture.

St Aidan's High School in Derrylin has established a Business Insights Partnership with Quinn Industrial Holdings (QIH).

It is designed to address identified gaps between the needs of employers and historical outcomes achieved by GCSE pupils in that area of Fermanagh.

The five-year partnership involves several initiatives to support the school in delivering its Key Stage 4 business studies course.

It will give practical insight to pupils around aspects of starting, growing, working in and controlling a business.

First Minister Arlene Foster and Education Minister Peter Weir attended yesterday's launch while QIH's representatives included Mr Lunney.

In September last year, Mr Lunney was left by the side of a road in Co Cavan after a two and a half hour long attack.

The businessman suffered a broken leg, was slashed with a knife and doused with bleach.

He had been abducted by a gang outside his family home in Kinawley as he drove back from work.

Speaking at yesterday's launch, QIH Chief Executive Liam McCaffrey said the partnership was part of a wider and ambitious educational engagement programme.

"We are delighted that St Aidan's have come on-board with us and we are committed to working with them to developing sustainable early-stage careers-path for our future leaders," he said.

St Aidan's Principal Pat McTeggart said the link was an "exciting adventure which will be hugely beneficial to the students and the staff".

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