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Falkirk Council plans tigher rein on school places

St Bernadette's Primary in Stenhousemuir is one of the denominational schools with capacity issues

St Bernadette's Primary in Stenhousemuir is one of the denominational schools with capacity issues

 

Schools bursting at the seams have forced education chiefs to come up with changes to Falkirk Council’s admission policy.

The demand for places at denominational schools has already forced the local authority to cap the intake at all St Mungo’s High feeder primary schools in 2013.

This led to 40 youngsters being refused admission.

It also resulted in the council being unable to retain reserved places for any families moving into the catchment area, members of the education committee heard at Tuesday’s meeting.

Gary Greenhorn, joint acting education director, said it now proposed that only pupils who are baptised Roman Catholics would be automatically allocated a place at the start of P1 or when they move into the Falkirk Council area. All others would be required to submit a placing request to attend a denominational school.

Currently, pupils can be enrolled at either denominational or non-denominational schools in their catchment areas.

The official said: “The problem we have of not being able to reserve places has led to some siblings being transported to different schools.”

Consultation will start on May 6 and last until June 27 with public meetings taking place on May 20 at St Patrick’s in Denny, May 27 at St Mary’s in Bo’ness and June 9 at St Mungo’s, all starting at 7 p.m.

Any change to the current arrangements will have to be in place by November to allow for it to be implemented for the P1 intake in August 2015.

 

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