A petition has been launched in a bid to stop the threatened closure of Clapham CE Primary School
Since the petition was started last week, the Friends of Clapham School have had an enthusiastic response and hope to reach 1,000 signatures before submitting it to North Yorkshire and Craven District Councils.
Tracey Bilton, Friends of Clapham School, said: “It’s important our local representatives understand the strength of feeling in our community and everyone needs to express their opinions on the proposed closure of our school which is such an important feature of our rural community.
“Only last May, the school governors met with parents to discuss the current sustainability of the school and proposed a plan for next year to save money.
“The governors had a strong proposal for the future and were working on a solid staffing structure.
“We were given the strong impression by North Yorkshire County Council the school had confirmed a three-year plan to ensure the stability of our children’s education.
“It came as a complete surprise to everyone in the village when North Yorkshire County Council started the closure process.
“The school is a designated rural school and the council should make every effort to ensure the school is retained – the consultation appears to have been started without discussion with local people.”
Iain Crossley, chair of the Community Action Group, which is working with the school governors, said: “It is important the council has a joined-up policy to support rural areas.
“In 2017, Horton-in-Ribblesdale was closed and this year the council has announced the development of affordable housing in Horton to attract families into the Yorkshire Dales National Park.
“We understand some local schools are already at capacity and need to ensure children receive a consistent quality education.”