In December 2007, Sir Kenneth Bloomfield, Chairman of the Board of Governors replied to a PACE letter published in the Newsletter in which concern was raised about the extent to which INST assisted pupils from disadvantaged backgrounds.
Sir Kenneth cited a policy which was claimed to provide incentive for parents from the environs to sent their boys to the school.
The Paretntal Alliance for Choice in Education wanted to test the assertion and submitted an FOIA 2000 request for the number of beneficiaries and the amount paid by the school to provide assistance with fees etc.
Instead of supplying the requested information within the time limits of the Act, the Royal Belfast Academical Institution, RBAI, have refused the request on the basis of cost.
Perhaps another example of keeping those with a “yellow and black cap” envy away from the gates?
PACE have no intention of abandoning the search for the facts in this matter. The sooner that INST, a public authority, comply with a request for information from parents the less likely that the Information Commissioner will come calling.