York & North Yorkshire

Derwent school closure due to falling pupil numbers

Falling pupil numbers are to blame for the closure of a primary school in York, a council has said.

The Labour-run City of York Council is proposing to close Derwent School in September and expand nearby Osbaldwick Primary.

The school is currently more than 100 pupils short of its 210 capacity while Osbaldwick has more than 200 students.

Up to 25 staff face redundancy but the authority said as many as possible would be redeployed.

'Demographic change'

Teachers and support staff facing redundancy would be given priority for any vacancies at the expanded Osbaldwick school, the council added.

The Derwent school buildings would be retained with Osbaldwick running from both sites.

Councillor Janet Looker, executive member for education, said: "Legally it is a closure but we are pulling together two schools.

"It is partly due to the demographics in that part of the city. You do find in some areas that children grow up but their parents remain in the area. So the numbers of young children fall."

The cost per pupil per year at Derwent is almost double that of neighbouring schools due to the low number of children attending, she said.

Both school were inspected by Ofsted in 2010.

Derwent was judged as satisfactory and Osbaldwick was considered to be a "good school with outstanding outcomes".

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