Sadness as Langtoft School earmarked for closure

Langtoft School headteacher Lynn Wilson.
Langtoft School headteacher Lynn Wilson.

A THIRD school has been earmarked for potential closure as part of a council review.

It was announced this week Langtoft Primary School and Nursery could close by July, leaving 23 pupils – including children who attend the nursery – with the prospect of joining a new school.

Both Gembling Primary School and Dunswell Primary School are also facing the prospect of closure.

In a joint statement from headteacher Lynn Wilson and Mark Kelly, chair of governors, it was said: “Langtoft Primary School has been held in high regard as a centre of learning and a huge support to the community. In December 2012 the school was judged as a good school in all areas by Ofsted. Parent View shows 100% of parents would recommend the school to another parent.

“Everyone in the school community is very saddened indeed that despite every effort made by the school, budgetary reductions, coupled with falling rolls have resulted in the local authority’s proposal.

“We consider ourselves to be financially viable for the foreseeable future and to continue as a hub for our village community.

“The school is the heart of so much of the village way of life. By closing this village school, these children are being robbed of this rite of passage and the council are ripping the heart out of village life.”

Jo Richardson, mother to Langtoft pupil Alfred, aged four, said: “I feel saddened really. Not only for my son’s education because it is a fantastic friendly school, but also for our community. We do not have a lot in the community and the school is one of the main hubs really.”

Karl Phillips, who also attended the public meeting held at Gembling Primary School on Monday, said: “It is ridiculous really. It is an excellent school and it is literally out of the blue. It is a perfectly good school, with good teachers – there are no qualms. I am not going to take this one easily.”

Paul Butler, inclusion and access manager for the council, said: “The council has not had to review the future of a school for some years now, but unfortunately the national changes to school funding means that we have no option.

“Whenever we review the future of a school, we will always look for ways to help it to become more viable and sustainable, but this is not always possible.

“We will be consulting everyone who is affected by the reviews and take into account their views before presenting any proposals to the Cabinet of the council.”

A consultation will be held on Monday February 18 with East Riding Council, parents, governors and staff at the school.