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In another country

What happened in February 2017 was a tragedy that had a deep effect on those who worked in the TNS community.

Such events have a complex impact on each and every individual.

For some, the trauma of that day will live with them for the rest of their lives. For others, time heals the scars that have been left behind.

If ever a school could be held up as an exemplar on how to cope, it was TNS. Not because the resources that should have been made available at that time were put in place, but the way that the community came together and worked with the family involved.

There was no blame, there were no recriminations, just an overwhelming sense of sadness.

The school fought back. Staff came together and worked to ensure that all young people were provided with care that they needed. They liaised with external experts from CAMHS and re-built the sense of stability that some very vulnerable youngsters required.

The school survived, not for any financial need, but because everyone wanted it to be there.

PKC saw otherwise.

From that moment on they did everything that they could to discredit TNS in the eyes of others. They made false allegations, wrote complaints, refused to cooperate even when pupil needs demanded that this took place.

The same officers who had denied funding for that young man and who informed him just 3 days before he took his own life on the first day back from the February holiday, worked every angle they could to attribute blame to the school rather than their own poor decision-making. And that campaign lasted from the day he died until the day the school died.

In another country, TNS would have been held up as an example to others for what can be achieved when a community comes together. But this is Scotland and that awful tragedy occurred in Perth & KInross.

So the school had to go.

23rd November 2018.

Bill Colley