max temp: 15°C

min temp: 12°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

More than 4,000 motorists were caught speeding during the first three months of enforcing the new 60mph speed limit on the Orwell Bridge.

A drug user found with cannabis inside a Kinder egg after going to Martlesham police investigation centre to answer bail for a theft offence has been jailed.

The clocks will wind back an hour this weekend, giving you an extra hour in bed.

Campaigners are today making a toast to community spirit and tasting a hard-earned sip of success as their dream of saving a village pub becomes a reality.

An Ipswich couple have jived, waltzed and quickstepped their way to the top in an international competition – landing first place in the Miami world professional ten championships.

Mid Suffolk District Council have apologised after admitting an “embarrassing” mistake was made in a letter sent to voters this week.

Part of prestigious independent Woodbridge School is set to be converted to housing as part of major changes to the site.

A person has been successfully talked down from the Orwell Bridge this morning.

It didn’t last long – Town couldn’t turn their victory against Burton into a winning streak and succumbed to a 3-0 loss to Newcastle last weekend.

As we approach November there is still plenty of great local sport to get your teeth into.

Most read

Most commented


Show Job Lists

Topic pages


Newsletter Sign Up

MyDate24 MyPhotos24