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Wimborne Academy Trust have begun a consultation process to reduce the number of children admitted to Hillside First Community School each year, from 60 to 30 children. This comes as a result of the recent reduction in the number of young families living in the local area, and will mean that Hillside has one class per year group instead of two. At present, there are 90 school places in Verwood each year for children wishing to attend a church school, and a further 60 places for families who wish to choose a non-denominational education. If the proposed changes take place, there will be 90 church school places, and just 30 non-church school places. This should not be a discussion about being anti-religion, but rather, pro-choice. Local families unable to secure a nondenominational school place will be forced to travel out of catchment for their education. A reduction in the number of school classes will also result in decreased funding for Hillside, and an inevitable reduction in the number of teaching and support staff. This could easily lead to the deterioration of the school’s provision. This would also put more pressure of the other schools in Verwood and cause more traffic problems at the Verwood First and EMS campus.
We need people to write an e-mail or letter to support the campaign to keep the numbers of the Community school to 60 per year. This will allow the community of Verwood to have a better choice of what school they would like their children to attend and not be forced into a situation that wouldn't suit their children's needs. Hillside has been a school that supports the whole community and their needs. Over the next few years Verwood has several new housing developments which is likely to bring more families to Verwood, this seems very shorted sighted to reduce the numbers now. Please e-mail to Office@hillsidefirst.dorset.sch.uk or write to Hillside Community First School Hillside Road Verwood Dorset BH31 7HE
We need the whole community to get involved to help save Hillside First School which has been in Verwood for over 50 years.