Woking's private Oakfield School closes

Pupils have been left searching for places a month before the beginning of the new academic year after a private school in Woking closed.

Families have been contacting Surrey County Council about state school places and another private school has run entrance exams for affected pupils.

Surrey County Council confirmed the closed school was Woking's independent Oakfield School in Pyrford.

The BBC was unable to contact anybody at the school in Coldharbour Road.

'Sudden news'

A Surrey County Council spokesman said: "We are aware of the sad closure of the independent Oakfield School and have received enquiries from a few parents about places at our schools."

The education authority said any parent who would like to apply for a place for their child should speak to its contact centre as soon as possible, or download an application form from the council's school admissions website.

The council spokesman said: "We understand very well what a difficult situation this is for Oakfield parents and pupils and have written to all our secondary head teachers in the locality to make them aware of what is happening and ask them to be sympathetic.

"But ultimately it will depend on whether places are available and the Oakfield pupils' exam requirements can be met."

Andrew Gough, headmaster of Ripley Court preparatory school, in Rose Lane, Ripley, published a letter on his school's website to Oakfield parents, which said he heard the "sudden news" of Oakfield's immediate closure with great sadness.

Adding that two other local schools had closed in the past decade, he wrote: "This has taught me that there is no easy way of closing a school - it invariably causes great consternation, concern and worry for parents and children."

Mr Gough held a meeting for Oakfield parents on Saturday and said families who were abroad could attend individual meetings later.

Ripley Court held entrance tests for Oakfield candidates on Wednesday and was marking papers on the same day with offers to be sent out by Friday.

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