Chaos as schools put up 'Full' signs

PUBLISHED: 11:40 13 July 2001 | UPDATED: 10:20 03 March 2010

NO room at the local school! That is the nightmare reality for dozens of children across Suffolk, an Evening Star investigation reveals.

NO room at the local school!

That is the nightmare reality for dozens of children across Suffolk, an Evening Star investigation can reveal today.

Families are moving from all over the country to set up home in our fast-growing county.

But, when they arrive, some are finding that their catchment area schools are already full – and their children must walk miles to less crowded schools in other areas. People moving house within Suffolk are also facing problems.

In the Ipswich area, many schools are bursting at the seams. At Copleston High School, 47 parents appealed against the refusal of a place, a figure which the local education authority says is not unusual for a popular school.

Angry dad Tony Titman moved into the Copleston area three months ago, and lives just a few minutes walk from the school. But he has been told his daughter Dannielle, 11, must travel all the way to Holywells High.

"I am just not prepared to send Dannielle to Holywells," he commented. "We want her to go to Copleston which is her catchment school."

He said if necessary he would keep his daughter out of school in September until a place was found.

Meanwhile, families moving to other areas are also facing problems.

Sharon Trenter is moving from Ipswich to Holland Road in Felixstowe, and wants her seven-year-old daughter Zoe Scott to go to nearby Langer Primary.

But she has been told the school is full – and Zoe must go to Grange Primary, in another part of the town.

Suffolk County Council's education department says that appeals over school admissions have risen this year, mainly due to the numbers of people moving into the county.

"This kind of movement is something that we cannot always predict, although we do have a team of people looking at the numbers of school places we need across the county," said deputy director of education David Thornton.

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