Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 15°C

min temp: 7°C


Monks Eleigh: School closure branded a ‘catalogue of errors’

08:00 26 July 2014

Monks Eleigh Primary School.

Monks Eleigh Primary School.


The public consultation process for the closure of a tiny village primary school has been branded a “complete shambles” by a local parliamentary candidate.


Monks Eleigh Primary School closed unofficially at Easter when the last students left after months of uncertainty following a poor Ofsted report.

The school went downhill after it was judged to be “inadequate” by inspectors last July and the number of students plummeted from 37 to just nine.

A statutory notice period over whether the school in Churchfield should close ended yesterday.

But Jane Basham, Labour’s parliamentary candidate for South Suffolk, described the way the school closure had been handled as a “catalogue of errors” by the local education authority (LEA), including a “woefully inaccessible” informal consultation.

Ms Basham, who has been involved with the SaveMEschool campaign, said: “There was no public meeting and no attempts by the council to reach out to people in Monks Eleigh and others who use the school or who understand rural communities.

“The council has failed to undertake any assessment of the impact that the loss of the school will have on the village.

“Local people, especially parents, felt kept deliberately at ‘arms length’ as the school was catapulted by the LEA, through no fault of its own, towards closure.”

A spokesman for the council said a number of responses had been received during the formal consultation and statutory notice periods, which were being analysed by officers ahead of a cabinet meeting on September 9.

He added: “We as an authority want to ensure Suffolk’s children are receiving a good or better education – this above all is our biggest priority.”



Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Ipswich Star visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Ipswich Star staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Ipswich Star account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

Glen Chisholm with baby Clinton 18 years ago.

Eighteen years ago the Ipswich Hospital Neonatal Unit saved the life of premature baby Clinton Chisholm.

The new bridge over Bramford Road takes shape.

It is 30 years since the face of Ipswich was changed completely with the opening of the final section of the town’s southern bypass.

Ipswich Basketball Club prepare for the new season at Copleston Sports Centre.

Copleston Sports Centre and Ipswich Basketball Club plea for investors to make long-awaited dream a reality

Poundworld opens in Ipswich

The fourth bargain-basement shop in Ipswich town centre opened this morning.

The area in Clarkson Street where two gangs fought on September 23

Four people were arrested in drug raids carried out at six premises in the Wilberforce Street and Clarkson Street areas of Ipswich yesterday.

The East Anglian Air Ambulance is in attendance.

A woman has suffered a “potentially life-changing” head injury during a crash in Beccles.

South East Suffolk Magistrates' Court

Two drivers are paying the price after being caught travelling at more than 100mph on Suffolk’s roads.

A cyclist and a car collided on the St Augustine's roundabout in Ipswich.

A female cyclist has been taken to hospital after colliding with a car in Ipswich.

Jasmine Skingle at London Fashion Week.

An 11-year-old designer from Ipswich was part of an inaugural showcase of young talent at this year’s London Fashion Week.

70,000 new homes are needed in Suffolk by 2031.

Suffolk is a growing county – and council officials believe it will need 70,000 new homes to accommodate its growing population between now and 2031.

Most read

Most commented

Topic pages