Page last updated at 13:52 GMT, Tuesday, 8 February 2011
Shropshire schools reorganisation plans
Wakeman secondary school
Shrewsbury's Wakeman school is the only secondary listed for closure

To some parents and teachers, plans to close nine Shropshire schools, and "federate" a further 20, will seem reminiscent of 2008.

Three years ago, the county council released a list of 22 primary schools it proposed to close, along with merger plans for 16 others.

For many of those directly affected, it was a painful and emotional experience.

The list led to intense protests and within a month the council decided to shelve most of the plans.

Of those on the 2008 list, Barrow, Hopton Wafers, Onny and Maesbury primary schools are once again facing closure.

Proposed closures 2011
Wakeman secondary school, Shrewsbury
Barrow Primary
Hopton Wafers Primary
Onny Primary
Maesbury Primary
Stiperstones Primary
Lydbury North Primary
Ifton Heath Primary (to amalgamate with Rhyn Park Secondary)
Shawbury Primary and St Mary's to amalgamate

Lydbury North, spared merger in 2008, is now on the closure list.

The Wakeman in Shrewsbury is the only secondary school named on the list, affecting about 400 pupils.

Independent Policy Commission

After abandoning its plans, the council established an Independent Policy Commission (IPC).

In July 2009, the IPC reported that small, rural schools should not be closed to plug funding gaps.

Recognising the financial pressures, the report recommended closer partnerships between schools, rather than mergers.

Proposals to set up federations between nearby schools follow the IPC recommendations.

In practice it is still unclear to what level schools within each federation will share resources, governors and even budgets.

Proposed federations
Whitchurch Infant and Junior
Norton in Hales and Woore
Baschurch, Weston Lullingfields and Myddle
Woodfield Infant and St George's Junior in Shrewsbury
Market Drayton Infant and Junior
Newcastle, St George's in Clun, Clunbury and St Mary's in Bucknell
Ludlow Infant and Junior
Kinlet, Stottesdon and Farlow

In 2011, funding has become an even greater issue than it was in 2008.

Following the government Spending Review, Shropshire Council was faced with finding total budget savings of £76m over four years.

In terms of central government grants, Shropshire is one of the worst-funded education authorities in England (per pupil).

Falling pupil numbers amplify the funding shortfall.

Council figures show the loss of grant funding over the past five years due to falling pupil numbers "amounts to £10m".

In January 2010 36,888 pupils were registered in Shropshire schools, which was 2,560 fewer than in 2005.

The council said it would have more than 5,000 empty primary school places by 2012 if action was not taken.

Nine Shropshire schools to shut
08 Feb 11 |  Shropshire
Cuts may lead to school closures
10 Nov 10 |  Shropshire
Small schools 'should stay open'
15 Jul 09 |  Shropshire




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