THE FUTURE of Manchester's only teacher training college should be clearer by the end of the month when legal action it is taking against the Secretary of State for Education and Science comes before the High Court.
De La Salle College, Hopwood Hall, is fighting a decision by Sir Keith Joseph to terminate initial teacher training courses at the college, which would effectively mean its closure.
In conjunction with the legal proceedings, a vociferous campaign to save the college was launched by the Bishops' Conference last November.
As part of the campaign James Callaghan, Labour MP for Middleton and Prestwich, last week presented the House of Commons with a petition asking the Secretary of State to reconsider his decision.
The petition, which contained over 100,000 signatures, was organised by Bishop Thomas Holland of Salford. lie intends to extend it to collect more signatures from the whole country.
But it is clear that the college is pinning much hope on the legal action, the basis for which is that the Secretary of State has acted ultra vires.
The college argues that precedent established between the Department of Education and the Church hierarchy since 1944 Education Act has been breached in three ways by the Secretary of State's decision.