Search

Secondary schools face placing shortage when primary children move on, LGA warns

PUBLISHED: 13:44 04 September 2017 | UPDATED: 09:59 07 September 2017

Poplar 's newly-expanded Woolmore Primary School opened by Tower Hamlets Council in 2015. Picture: Rehan Jamil

Poplar 's newly-expanded Woolmore Primary School opened by Tower Hamlets Council in 2015. Picture: Rehan Jamil

© Rehan Jamil

Education authorities are at risk of being unable to meet demand for secondary school places in the next five years, the Local Government Association warns.

Tower Hamlets Council has been coping with the East End’s rising population by such expansions like Poplar’s Woolmore Primary to meet the demand from the massive Blackwall Reach development.

But the LGA is concerned about what happens when youngsters are ready to move up to secondary education.

Pupil forecasts show thousands of children up and down the country face missing out on a secondary place by 2022.

Local authorities need to be given powers to force academies and free schools to expand if voluntary agreement cannot be reached, the LGA said.

“The squeeze on places is now about to hit secondary schools,” LGA’s Children and Young People Board Chair Richard Watts predicts.

“Councils have helped create 600,000 more primary places since 2010—but securing new secondary places as those children move on is becoming increasingly difficult.

“Most secondary schools are now academies, leaving councils working with one hand behind their back to get pupils a place at their first choice.”

A surge in demand for primary places has been largely met by expanding council-maintained schools.

But the LGA analysis reveals that now more secondary school places need to be created, with at least 12 local authorities facing a shortfall next year, 23 the year after and to 66 areas by 2022-23, with nearly two-thirds of Britain’s secondary schools now switched to independent academies.

The LGA is calling for local education authorities to be given back powers to open new schools themselves while also forcing academies to expand to provide the places needed, if voluntary agreement is impossible.

Latest East London News Stories

Experts believe one in six people across the UK will have a mental health crisis this week that could lead to them developing a serious disorder.

07:00

An education charity bringing east London schoolchildren together with pensioners on inter-generation projects has been nominated for a Liberty Human Rights award.

A paedophile has been jailed for historical child sexual abuse at a former Tower Hamlets children’s home where youngsters were in council care in the 1970s and 80s.

Yesterday, 09:51

The Boundary Commission has announced revised proposals for changes to constituency seats.

Yesterday, 09:35

Night Tube drivers are set to be balloted for industrial action in a dispute over their career progression.

Yesterday, 07:00

Nominations close today to elect a new neighbourhood council in London’s East End to run the Spitafields Forum public consultations on the future of the district.

Yesterday, 06:50

Volunteers have been trained to delve into what makes people lonely in a study in east London by Tower Hamlets Health and Wellbeing Board.

Mon, 17:08

You’d have been forgiven for thinking you were seeing the east London sky through an Instagram filter this afternoon, as Storm Ophelia turned the capital a strange shade of yellow.

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Most read news

Show Job Lists

Competitions

Having a brand new kitchen is something that lots of people want but can only dream of. Sadly keeping up to date and making our living spaces as nice as they can be is a costly and incredibly stressful business. Even a fresh coat of paint makes all the difference but isn’t easy or quick.

Who wouldn’t love the chance to go on a shopping spree. Imagine being able to walk into a shop and choose whatever your heart desires without having to worry about how much it costs.

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Docklands and East London Advertiser
e-edition today

Subscribe

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now