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School Closures (Consultation)

Volume 981: debated on Monday 24 March 1980

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asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science what he considers constitutes adequate consultation with the following groups in cases of proposed closure of schools (a) parents, (b) teachers, (c) managers and (d) local residents; and what other groups he considers should be involved in the consultation process.

Paragraph 6 of circular 5/77 states that before proposals are made to cease to maintain a school the Secretary of State expects that full consultations will have taken place with parents, teaching and other staff, and managers or governors of the school concerned. I do not believe it would be appropriate to make more detailed prescriptions about the nature and the extent of consultations, since this is something best left to local education authorities to decide in the light of local circumstances.