Plea to parents over controversial school 'merger' (From East London and West Essex Guardian Series)
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Plea to parents over controversial 'merger' of Newport Primary and Dawlish primary schools in Leyton
Parents concerned over the proposed union of two schools have been urged to take part in a public consultation.
Waltham Forest Council’s cabinet member for children and young People, Cllr Mark Rusling, has backed the plan to pull together Dawlish School in Jesse Road, Leyton, and nearby Newport Primary in Newport Road, to form a ‘hard federation’.
Newport headteacher Prue Barnes has also overseen operations at Dawlish since the school's previous head left in November last year.
And the council is now proposing to combine the two schools under one senior management team, which would see Ms Barnes continue as head of both schools, as the arrangement has proved a success.
But parents at Dawlish Primary have criticised the proposal, claiming the distinct community identity of the school would be lost.
However, Cllr Rusling believes the move would be beneficial to all pupils.
He said: “It is important to understand that the schools are not merging and will remain as separate schools.
“The consultation is about a proposed ‘hard federation’.
“I would urge parents to engage fully with the consultation that outlines in greater detail the reasons behind the proposal and the potential benefits.
“The council supports the proposal for a hard federation between Newport and Dawlish primary schools.”
The consultation ends on July 20 and a letter from the school suggests a decision will be made the following day at a meeting of the two governing boards.