Page last updated at 16:32 GMT, Tuesday, 11 November 2008

Group worried over pupil numbers

Pupils protest over planned school closures in Stoke-on-Trent
Pupils and parents have held protests

An action group questioning how many pupils Stoke-on-Trent will have in the future says not all can be accommodated under plans to reorganise education.

Proposals have included cutting the number of high schools from 17 to 13.

Save Trentham High said the government estimated there would be 14,642 high school pupils in early 2019, 2,446 more than a council figure for 2018.

The city council said the difference was partly due to an increase in the estimated number of pupils.

Confirmed approval

Protests have been held over plans to reorganise secondary schools, which have included eight schools, including Trentham, merging into five academies.

The Department for Children, Schools and Families confirmed Schools Minister Jim Knight said last week there would be 14,642 pupils.

Mr Knight had confirmed approval for the first stage of the council's Building Schools for the Future programme, the council has said.

The action group said it had proved before that pupil population figures by Serco, which runs children's and young people's services in the city, were "under estimated and short sighted".

The group's chair, Daniel Jordan, said: "If they've got another 2,500 kids, near enough, where are they going to go?

"They are going to have to build more schools or force more kids into schools not designed for those numbers."

The council said the difference was due to an increase of 1,052 on the pupil estimate for 2017/18 and the other 1,394 was due to the possible extra amount in the following years.

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