Moray Council to consider next steps for Crossroads Primary School
Moray Council‘s Education, Children’s and Leisure Services Committee has today (Wednesday 7 June) agreed to support community engagement as part of the process to identify future options for Crossroads Primary School.
The school, which is part of the Keith Associated School Group, has been mothballed since January 2023 after the roll fell to five pupils. At the time there were 22 children in the school catchment.
Mothballing refers to a temporary decision to close a school where the roll has fallen to a very low level. The council’s mothballing policy is triggered when pupil numbers falls to less than 15. Rather than closing a school, mothballing gives the opportunity for it to reopen should circumstances change.
A report to committee following a review of the mothballing decision set out proposals for the new academic year starting in August. Councillors agreed to start the process of actively considering the long term future of Crossroads Primary, which is designated a remote rural school.
The options appraisal will involve engagement with all of the Crossroads catchment community including children, parents/carers, staff, individual community members and representative community groups.
One of the options to be considered would be the closure of the school. If this is considered to be the only viable option for Crossroads Primary, then the council must undertake a statutory consultation under the Schools (Consultation) (Scotland) Act 2010.
Chair of the Education, Children’s and Leisure Services Committee, Cllr Kathleen Robertson, said: “The decision to mothball Crossroads Primary was taken due to the number of children attending dropping to five. While I recognise the emotional bonds and the concerns people have for the school, it is important that the community take this opportunity to respond to the consultation and make sure that their voices are heard.
“We need to give careful consideration to the educational impact on our young people, both in closing and in remaining open, and I look forward to hearing the ideas of the community on making the school viable.”
A report on the outcome of the option appraisal process will be brought back to a future meeting of the committee.
Communications and Media Officer