Tiny rural school is saved from closure

As reported by the BBC, a tiny 28-pupil school in Yorkshire has been saved from closure thanks to the support of the local community

A tiny Yorkshire Dales school, which has been threatened with closure, has been saved by the local community.

Clapham School has just 28 pupils and has had the threat of closure looming over it.

However, the North Yorkshire County Council has decided to overturn those plans and keep the 150-year-old school running.

While the school is aware that it will continue to face challenges, campaigners and school staff have rejoiced over the decision.

Yorkshire Dales National Park Authority, with Richmondshire and Craven district councils, have all said they want to keep small rural schools regardless of the challenges.

Only 56% of primary pupils in the catchment currently attend Clapham Primary, and governors initially asked the council to consider closing the school after pupil numbers fell from 42 to 28 in 2014-15.

However, new local housing could push the numbers back up to 40 or beyond.

Iain Crossley, of Clapham Community Action Group, said calling off closure plans was “great news”.

“We thought it was a done deal but we’re really pleased councillors listened to us and overturned their decision,” he said.

“They’ve given us an opportunity to develop the school. We now need to encourage parents to come back. We think the school’s got a really good future.”

He added that a school helps “village rejuvenation”.

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