Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

School Doomed as Children Drift Away

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

School Doomed as Children Drift Away

Article excerpt

A school which has lost half of its pupils is likely to close at the end of this year.

Proposals to close Kepier Chare Primary School in Crawcrook will be put to Gateshead Council's cabinet next week as part of a continuing plan to cut surplus places in the town.

The school, which in 2003 had 180 pupils, now has fewer than 90 children and will drop to 75 next year.

Many parents have taken their children out of the school in the past year after the council said it was looking at a merger with nearby Emmaville Primary.

Last night, governors' chairman Noel Rippeth said the decision had been reluctantly accepted by most parents because of the loss of children.

He said: "There's a few parents that might want to keep the school open, but the governors contacted the local authority because we were concerned about the way the budget was going.

"Closing is probably making the best of a bad job. It's sad, but the children have drifted away and we would lose another teacher and just have two or three classes if we kept going. …

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