Another year, another head for Gaelic school £53k top job may go to non-speaker
Rosie Jardine said: “We want to preserve the nature of the school as much as possible but we wouldn’t cut our nose off to spite our face if it came to it.”
A non- Gaelic speaker has been appointed once before, when James Lyon took over as head teacher in 2013 following a protracted four- year search i nvolving eight separate attempts to advertise the job.
Mr Lyon, a former football referee, lasted only eight
Rev Jan Steyn with the bible and, inset, Rev Dr Donald Caskie. months before he left for the top job at Grantown Primary, closer to his home in Forres, Moray.
Janet Macleod was the school’s first head teacher but left after two years in 2009 to pursue other projects.
She returned as acting head teacher in 2014 after the departure of Mr Lyon.
She was then replaced by Annie MacPhee, who was seconded from her role as a support for learning teacher at a nearby school. In the meantime, a row broke out between parents when former acting head Annika Jansson left the school in November 2012 after not being offered the head teacher’s role despite being the only candidate.
It followed a vociferous campaign by Comann nam Parant Inbhir Nis, a Gaelic parent organisation, that only a Ga e l i c - s p e a k i n g teacher should be given the role.
Inverness councillor Ken Gowans, whose daughter went to the school, said: “If we can’t recruit within the Gaelicspeaking community we’ll have to look at it again.”
A Highland Council spokeswoman said the authority wanted to appoint a Gaelic speaker but wouldn’t be drawn on the next step if an appropriate candidate couldn’t be found.