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Last Updated: Wednesday, 14 May, 2003, 17:45 GMT 18:45 UK
School closures given go-ahead
School children
The reforms are 'vital' to cut surplus places say Education Leeds

Plans to close five high schools and open four primary schools - at the expense of infant and junior schools - have been ratified by councillors.

Leeds City Council's Executive Board gave the go-ahead to the controversial high and primary school reviews despite a wave of protests from parents, staff and pupils.

Education Leeds, which is responsible for school services, says the reforms are vital to cut the number of surplus places in the city.

But campaigners Leeds CASE predict the new set-up will lead to further school closures in the future.

Under the plans, Braim Wood Boys School in Oakwood and Agnes Stewart Church of England School in Burmantofts will be closed and pupils merged into a Young People's Academy from September 2006.

They don't seem to have taken any notice of the feelings of the local communities.
Dave Roberts, Leeds CASE

Matthew Murray High School in Holbeck and South Leeds Arts College at Merlyn Rees in Belle Isle will close and form a new school on the site of South Leeds stadium from September 2005.

City of Leeds School in Woodhouse will close and possibly reopen as a Young People's College for 14-19 year olds from September 2006.

Primrose High School in Burmantofts will be rebuilt using private funds on the site of Shakespeare Primary School by September 2006.

Carr Manor High School in Meanwood will lose its sixth form but gain extra buildings ready for September 2006.

Dave Roberts, chairman of Leeds CASE, told BBC News Online: "It's very disappointing these plans are going ahead.

"They don't seem to have taken any notice of the feelings of the local communities."

Poles apart

The campaign group now predicts the new school in South Leeds, on the closure of Merlyn Rees and Matthew Murray, will have a life-span of five years.

"That particular area is going to be a disaster," said Mr Roberts. "The two schools are poles apart - made up of different communities."

On the primary school front, Drighlington infant and junior schools will merge into a new primary from September 2004.

The same will happen to Blackgates infants and junior schools in Morley, ready for September 2004.

Osmondthorpe and Whitebridge primary schools will merge from September 2004.

Waterloo infant and junior schools in Pudsey will amalgamate from September 2004.

Asket Hill Primary School in Seacroft will close in July 2004. Grange Farm Primary School will increase its intake.




SEE ALSO:
Five schools to be closed
07 May 03  |  West Yorkshire
Secondary schools face the axe
05 Mar 03  |  England
Fears over 'superschool' plans
13 Jan 03  |  England


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