Calendar An icon of a desk calendar. Cancel An icon of a circle with a diagonal line across. Caret An icon of a block arrow pointing to the right. Email An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of the Facebook "f" mark. Google An icon of the Google "G" mark. Linked In An icon of the Linked In "in" mark. Logout An icon representing logout. Profile An icon that resembles human head and shoulders. Telephone An icon of a traditional telephone receiver. Tick An icon of a tick mark. Is Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes. Is Not Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes with a diagonal line through it. Pause Icon A two-lined pause icon for stopping interactions. Quote Mark A opening quote mark. Quote Mark A closing quote mark. Arrow An icon of an arrow. Folder An icon of a paper folder. Breaking An icon of an exclamation mark on a circular background. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Caret An icon of a caret arrow. Clock An icon of a clock face. Close An icon of the an X shape. Close Icon An icon used to represent where to interact to collapse or dismiss a component Comment An icon of a speech bubble. Comments An icon of a speech bubble, denoting user comments. Ellipsis An icon of 3 horizontal dots. Envelope An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of a facebook f logo. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Home An icon of a house. Instagram An icon of the Instagram logo. LinkedIn An icon of the LinkedIn logo. Magnifying Glass An icon of a magnifying glass. Search Icon A magnifying glass icon that is used to represent the function of searching. Menu An icon of 3 horizontal lines. Hamburger Menu Icon An icon used to represent a collapsed menu. Next An icon of an arrow pointing to the right. Notice An explanation mark centred inside a circle. Previous An icon of an arrow pointing to the left. Rating An icon of a star. Tag An icon of a tag. Twitter An icon of the Twitter logo. Video Camera An icon of a video camera shape. Speech Bubble Icon A icon displaying a speech bubble WhatsApp An icon of the WhatsApp logo. Information An icon of an information logo. Plus A mathematical 'plus' symbol. Duration An icon indicating Time. Success Tick An icon of a green tick. Success Tick Timeout An icon of a greyed out success tick. Loading Spinner An icon of a loading spinner.

North-east parents given “one week” to find new school

Post Thumbnail

Friends will be split up and parents have been left “devastated” after Aberdeenshire Council last night confirmed the abrupt axeing of one of its primary schools.

Longhaven Primary School, near Peterhead, will close its doors for what could be the final time next Friday following a year-long struggle to recruit a new headteacher.

A spokesman for the council said it no longer had the staff numbers to keep classes running after Easter.

The move has left parents of the school with just one week to arrange for their children to be enrolled elsewhere.

Last night, one said everyone associated with the school had been left “devastated” by the decision.

Parents were pulled into a special meeting with the authority’s head of education, Vincent Docherty, on Thursday night, when the news was broken to them.

Mum Lynda Thomson, who has an 11-year-old at the school, said parents were not given a chance to question the move.

“The problems started a year ago when they seconded our headteacher out to Port Erroll,” she said.

“We’ve had temporary teachers in place since, but these teachers can no longer continue in that role, so we’ve been given one week to find somewhere else for our children.

“Every single one of us feel it is completely unreasonable to ask us to find a new school within seven days.

“I have a son who is on the autistic spectrum and so a transition is vitally important to him. It needs to be a lengthy transition to stop anxiety. What is happening is crazy.

“It was done very clinically. They didn’t even entertain our arguments and immediately shut us down. There was no empathy. We’re utterly devastated and disgusted.”

The decision has also angered local councillors.

Peterhead South and Cruden Councillor Stephen Smith said he was told on Wednesday there may be “an issue” with staffing.

“Parents have been in contact with me and are clearly shocked at the short notice given,” he added.

“I am seeking answers to how Aberdeenshire Council has allowed a situation to arise where a school can be staffed and fully-functioning one week and the following week the parents are told there are no teachers to staff it and are asked to choose a new school for their children.

“This is not acceptable.”

Ward colleague Stephen Calder echoed those thoughts, saying: “It’s just not enough time for the parents or pupils.

“It’s disruptive to their social lives and education and it is very unfortunate.”

Mr Docherty confirmed there had been significant “recruitment challenges” at Longhaven over some time.

“Unfortunately, we have been unable to recruit teaching staff for Longhaven and this means pupils will need to attend other local schools after the Easter break,” the official said.

“The school currently has a very small roll and we have met with parents and employees to discuss alternative arrangements.

“While we regret the inconvenience it’s important that we find an educationally beneficial solution for all concerned.”

A spokesman for the council added that non-teaching staff at the school will be offered alternative duties until the long-term future of the school can be determined.

Already a subscriber? Sign in

[[title]]

[[text]]