Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Schools Rally Adds Pressure

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Schools Rally Adds Pressure

Article excerpt

Byline: By Neil Mckay

Protesters gathered thousands of signatures to back a campaign to save Northumberland's 45 middle schools from the axe at a rally in Morpeth this weekend.

Middle school pupils and their parents from Rothbury, Morpeth, Seahouses and Bedlington gathered in the town's Market Place to put pressure on Northumberland County Council, which is consulting on a shake-up which could scrap the county's three-tier educational system.

They collected some 2,000 signatures for a petition which will now be handed to education officials at a crucial meeting of the county council executive on May 27. Mother-of-two Avril Graham, part of the action group fighting to save Rothbury Middle School, said: "These plans seem to be all about money and not about benefiting the children.

"The present three-tier system works very well for our children. My daughter, Hannah, who is 10, goes to the Middle School in Rothbury but if the present system is abolished my son, Dylan, who is five, will have to be bussed to school in Morpeth 15 miles away when he is 10. …

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