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Last Updated: Thursday, 9 June, 2005, 15:07 GMT 16:07 UK
New review for village schools
A school protest sign

An action plan which could decide the future of some village schools in Powys has been approved by councillors.

The latest review looks to tackle the issue of schools which are over-subscribed or have extra places.

Two years ago plans to close a dozen in the county faced fierce opposition, but no schools have yet been identified for closure.

The draft document will now go out to what the council called a "genuine consultation exercise" until September.

Other counties in Wales, including Carmarthenshire, Denbighshire, Swansea and Cardiff, are reviewing schools at the moment in light of falling pupil numbers.

A Powys Council report showed that 40 schools have 25% or more spare places. The objective is to reduce the number of empty seats to 15 schools with 15% spaces by 2007/2008.

Everybody with an interest in the future provision of education in Powys can have a say
A Powys Council spokesman

The draft strategy will be circulated to parents, schools, community councils, town councils, the Welsh Assembly Government, AMs, MPs and other interested parties.

A council spokesman said: "The policy has not been passed, but what has been passed is a draft document and this is going out to consultation.

"This is a genuine consultation exercise and everybody with an interest in the future provision of education in Powys can have a say."

Surplus capacity

The council said in its first review two years ago that small schools with less than 28 pupils were not viable.

Most were eventually saved, forcing the council to look again at its small schools policy.

The Powys Council report said the review of a school may result in a new school, merger or closure.

Glyn Davies, Conservative AM for Mid and West Wales, said earlier this week that the council was "intent on revolutionising the structure of primary schools".

Closure school is 'soft target'
09 Jun 05 |  South West Wales
Threatened school refuses pupils
18 Nov 03 |  South West Wales

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