Victoria Primary School in Cornerswell Road - the most overcrowded school in the Vale of Glamorgan

Victoria Primary School in Cornerswell Road – the most overcrowded school in the Vale of Glamorgan

Three schools in Penarth currently have far more pupils on their school rolls than they have the capacity to cater for – according to figures which have emerged from the Vale of Glamorgan Council.

Penarth’s “sardine schools” comprise two of the best primary schools in the town –  Evenlode and Victoria –  and Stanwell, the top secondary school in Penarth.

  • Evenlode Primary School with 447 pupils is currently running at 6.43% over-capacity with 27 more pupils than it’s designed to accommodate .
  • Stanwell Secondary School has 1,995 pupils and is currently running at 7.49% over-capacity with  139 more pupils than it should have.
  • Victoria Primary with 466 pupils is the most stretched – running at 10.95% over-capacity with 46 more pupils than it should have . This is the school which has the highest over-capacity figure of all schools in the Vale of Glamorgan

In 2012 the Vale of Glamorgan Council had an overall surplus of  school places and was under pressure to cut costs by reducing this waste. The council was given a target to cut the surplus of places in its secondary schools to 12.9% and to reduce the surplus of places in its primary schools to  10.19%.

School chief Cllr Chris Elmore (Labour Castleland Ward, Barry)

Vale of Glamorgan school chief Cllr Chris Elmore (Labour Castleland Ward, Barry)

However, at the start of 2015 the council forecast that there would be “a greater than expected increase in surplus capacity for the secondary sector”.

That forecast turned out to be right. In January 2015  the number of surplus places in Vale of Glamorgan Council’s secondary schools went up  – despite the commitment to cut them – a fact which critics say is a reflection on the quality of management of the Labour-run Vale of Glamorgan Council as a local education authority.

  •  In January 2015 FOUR of the Vale Council’s secondary schools: Barry Comprehensive, Llantwit Comprehensive, Ysgol Bro Morgannwg and Bryn Hafren Comprehensive had no fewer that 25% of their desks empty.
  • THREE Vale primary schools, Holton Primary, Oakfield and Ysgol Gymraeg Dewi Sant had in excess of 25% surplus capacity.

But none of this has helped teachers and pupils in the three over-crowded schools in Penarth, –  which are coping with a total of 212 more pupils than they are supposed to have.

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  1. Chris Franks says:

    I believe that Stanwell manages its pupil admission arrangements and The Vale does not have any authority to restrict numbers. The more pupils the more cash for the school!
    The real problem is the failure of the authority to develop a proper secondary school reorganisation plan in Barry. The collapse of the first proposals has serious educational and financial implications.

    • Philip Rapier says:

      Another concrete case as to why it is in everyones interest for the Vale to amalgamate with Cardiff. Then hopefully any child may attend any School in the Cardiff City and County subject to admissions code of practice. As for overcrowding Grants are available for Temporary Classrooms and Self Budgetary Control Schools may also utilise surplus funds for this purpose
      This problem is mostly due to the New Labour policy of catchment boundary hopping nonsense perpuated by Blair, Blunkett and latterly Gove.
      The Westminster obsession with buiding houses we do not need were it not for an immigration policy they admit themselves is out of control is not exactly helping. They reduce funds for the Welsh Government if we fail to buid houses that cause us to overcrowd our Schools.

  2. Mr Augustine says:

    A scrutiny report went to the Vale’s Cabinet some years ago with recommendations that certain schools were closed to cut surplus places. ‘Leader’ of the council Neil Moore rejected the report when parents from Oakfield and a couple of the rural Vale schools campaigned to keep them open. We need councillors with backbone, integrity and strength of character to see through needed but contentious policies. The current Cabinet don’t fit the bill. Roll on 2016 when we get a chance to vote them out and roll on merger with Cardiff.

    • newsnet says:

      Normally after a four-year stint Vale of Glamorgan and Penarth Town Councillors would be coming to an end of their terms of office in May this year. However, without any public consultation, the Welsh Labour Government decided that the present councillors would remain in place for further year beyond their normal 4-year term of office. They therefore do not come up for re-election until May 2017. Strictly-speaking none of the current councillors have a public mandate beyond May 2016 because they were all elected on the basis of a four-year term of office – not five. The date to put in your diary for local government elections in Wales is Thursday the 4th of May 2017.

  3. Alan says:

    Meanwhile the Vale is hell-bent on filling every available piece of green space with houses…apartments and houses continue to spring up in Penarth and there is development planned for Sully…and where are the children to go for their education? Bonkers.

  4. Ivor Bagman says:

    Wait a moment
    Didn’t they demolish
    A school in High Street ?

    • Penarthmami says:

      yes they converted the old Church in Wales Primary school in to flats, with the Penarth Heights development I do wonder where the children attend school as all schools in Penarth are over subscribed.

  5. June Jones says:

    Great news in the penarth times today about the high ratings for schools in Vale of Glamorgan. Congratulations . Will it be covered by Penarth news?

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