Consultation begins over proposed school closure

Consultation is getting underway on the proposed closure of Parklands High School in Liverpool.

It follows an unsuccessful drive to reverse a slide in pupil numbers, which have been declining steadily for over the last few years. There are currently only 269 pupils at the 916 place school, meaning 7 out of 10 desks are empty.

Only 34 children have applied for places at the Speke school in September 2014 – a fall of more than half compared to 2008 when the intake was 84.

Exam results at the school have also been significantly lower – with just 32 percent of pupils getting five good GCSEs including English and maths, compared to 58 percent across the rest of the city.

Education watchdog OFSTED has now placed the school in special measures following a recent inspection, meaning the city council has to examine options for its future.

Councillor Jane Corbett, Cabinet member for education, said: “It is with great sadness and regret that we are starting a consultation over the closure of Parklands High School.

“We have exhausted every single option in trying to make the school sustainable over the last few years, including Academy status.

“It is a real shame that we have not been able to make any other option stack up. It is now getting to the stage where the school will not be able to offer a full curriculum which would adversely affect the learning of pupils.

“I would like to thank staff for their hard work and commitment to the school during this difficult time.

“If the closure does go ahead, we will work with pupils and parents to find places at other schools and ensure a smooth transition. We will also be working with teaching staff to help them secure alternative employment.”

It is being proposed that the school close in August 2014 with pupils transferring to others in the area including the brand new ESLA (Enterprise South Liverpool Academy), St Julies and Gateacre.