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Flintshire councillors claim education shake-up plans ‘don’t make sense’

A GROUP of Flintshire councillors has slammed proposals for a multi-million-pound reorganisation of secondary schools in the county – and claimed it is the sixth form system which should be shaken up.

Political faction the New Independents, formed last year to challenge Flintshire County Council’s leading Independent group, claims the authority ‘needs to come clean about its intentions’ for the county’s 12 high schools.

In a letter to the Chronicle, deputy group leader Cllr Carolyn Cattermoul said plans to merge schools to cope with the increasing number of surplus places ‘didn’t make sense’.

And she has asked the council’s executive committee to look at the sixth form system instead.

She said: “The council has only three schools that have viable sixth forms and six which have not.”

Cllr Cattermoul said the other two sixth forms of the 11 in Flintshire were at faith and language schools and might take more consideration.

“Flintshire could opt for a really radical decision to have two sixth form colleges of about 700 pupils each, providing high quality courses,” she said.

“This would result in the provision of 11-16 education in all the other schools.”

“We realise that not all the other schools would be viable, but this option needs to be explored. We feel that we need to look at the whole picture again as the suggested solution does not cover the long term future for the young people in Flintshire.”

Holywell High School, Elfed High School in Buckley and John Summers High School in Queensferry have been named by Flintshire County Council chiefs as the most under capacity – accounting for 64.44% of the 1,395 surplus places in Flintshire’s 12 secondary schools.