Rotherham Council in talks to create more places at Waverley school after youngsters miss out

A Rotherham Council education chief says the authority is working with the developer of a new housing estate to create additional school places, after 39 children missed out on a place at the local junior school – but they will not be provided for the new school year in September.

Thursday, 28th April 2022, 2:25 pm
Updated Thursday, 28th April 2022, 3:22 pm

Parents called on education bosses to put in place temporary classrooms to deal with a shortfall of school places for families on the Waverley estate after 39 youngsters were not offered a place at the school.

RMBC education bosses say that “due to extremely high demand, 39 children, 21 of whom live within the Waverley catchment area, have not been accepted into Waverley Junior Academy this year”.

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Parents called on education bosses to put in place temporary classrooms to deal with a shortfall of school places for families on the Waverley estate after 39 youngsters were not offered a place at the school.

Nathan Heath, Rotherham Council’s assistant director for education and inclusion, said: “The council works hard with our partners to ensure school places are keeping pace with predicted demand.

“Our performance is consistently above national average and over 95 per cent of children secured a place at a primary or junior school of their parents choosing this year.

“We use an established, national formula to calculate how many school places are typically required to meet demand based on birth rates, residential developments, and other relevant factors.

“However, due to extremely high demand and despite 25 per cent more places being provided than were predicted would be required, 39 children, 21 of whom live within the Waverley catchment area, have not been accepted into Waverley Junior Academy this year.

“Wherever possible, they have been offered places at their second and third preference schools, all within two miles of their home.

“The developer met their obligation to open Waverley Junior Academy to accommodate 60 children but, in light of this problem, we are speaking to the developer about the potential to bring forward plans to create additional places sooner than was originally agreed.

“Unfortunately any additional places that can be provided won’t be in place for the new school year in September.

“It’s in all our interests to ensure children have access to a good school close to home and we’re sorry that, due to exceptional circumstances, some Waverley parents have not been offered their first preference school.”