Petition calls for council to reveal how they plan to tackle future shortfall in secondary school places across borough

Parents in Gedling have started a petition calling on Nottinghamshire County Council to reveal how they plan to tackle a shortfall in secondary school places across the borough.

The petition claims 743 children will be without a space at one of the two secondary schools in the borough (Carlton Le Willows or Carlton Academy) by 2027.

It says that two new housing developments in the area will now increase demand for secondary school places and a third school is now needed in the area.

Concerns about school places were first raised back in May when local parent Ben Hemstock revealed at a public meeting that freedom of information request had shown Nottinghamshire County Council were predicting a shortfall of over 700 secondary school places in the borough by 2027.

But Nottinghamshire County Council’s Cllr Philip Owen, who is Chairman of Children and Young People’s Committee said Mr Hemstock’s claims about a future shortfall were ‘complete nonsense’.

He said: “Parents can be assured that sufficient places will be available now and in the future in Gedling and indeed across Nottinghamshire.

PICTURED: Carlton Academy

“The County Council already has a successful strategy in place to ensure that there are enough school places for its residents.

“Between 2012 and 2018, to accommodate rising birth rates and new housing developments, we have created 5,694 primary school places across Nottinghamshire, including 470 in Gedling. F

“Following on from this, plans are in place to expand existing provision to meet the need for secondary school places as these children grow older.”

Since the public meeting back in May, the council has announced plans to create 300 extra school places by expanding Carlton Academy.

Following the announcement, Cllr Chris Barnfather, who is the chairman of the council’s planning and licensing committee, said he hoped the move would ‘put to bed’ the myth that there would be a lack of secondary school places in the borough going forward.

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But Ben Hemstock wrote an opinion piece for Gedling Eye saying the expansion wouldn’t solve the issue.

Now parents are hoping the petition will put extra pressure on the council to reveal further plans around dealing with the potential shortfall.

Organisers of the petition said: “We don’t want super-sized schools, we need a third secondary school and need it soon. 

“What’s more important than your child’s education?”

You can view and sign the petition here:

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