Objections have been raised by parents and other schools over the proposed expansion of Lanesend Primary School in Cowes.
Lanesend Primary School have applied to the Department For Education for money to increase their pupil numbers by up to 66, extending the school significantly with new classrooms to accommodate a total of 504 children. This would see each year group would be split into 3 classes.
It’s understood that there is already around 230 spare pupil places in primary schools in the Cowes area.
It comes as no surprise that both Northwood Primary School and Gurnard Primary School have publicly objected to the planned expansion. Parents at Northwood Primary School have received a letter from the headteacher this week stating:
“At a time when Island schools and the local authority are reviewing pupil places with the view to reducing the size of pupil intakes, we feel it is both unhelpful and inappropriate for one school to disengage with the Isle of Wight community and seek to increase its pupil numbers.”
A parent/community meeting is being held tonight (Thursday) at 18:30 at Lanesend Primary School itself. Locals are urged to head along to the meeting to have a say and find out more about the project.
On behalf of the parents at Cowes Primary, Karen Forster has said:
“These proposals would mean Lanesend can offer smaller classes, but at what cost? This will have a detrimental impact on school budgets across the island because there is already not enough money to go around and they are asking for more when the numbers prove there isn’t a need for it.
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“There has been no consideration given to the impact on the local residents in the area. Parking is already dangerous; there is no further capacity for vehicles and you also have Little Love lane pre-school and the Foodbank adjacent to the school which compounds the problem.
“We are also concerned that the ‘increase in physical capacity’ has already been completed even though the Consultation only began in January and finishes on 20th February. The school applied for planning permission last year – this was granted and the building work was undertaken during the summer holidays”.