School move is on the timetable

Cragg Vale School.
Cragg Vale School.

Two upper Calder Valley schools will merge to create a new all-through school in Mytholmroyd.

The governing bodies of Cragg Vale Junior and Infant School and Calder High School have agreed to the amalgamation in a bid to provide the best opportunities for their students.

This proposal will see pupils from the primary school be taught at the existing Calder High site on Brier Hey Lane. While the school will be on one site, primary and secondary pupils will be taught in separate areas and will have separate headships.

Kate Shepherd, head teacher at Cragg Vale, said: “Amalgamating with Calder High School will provide us with the opportunity to preserve and build on the high-quality education and strong ethos at Cragg Vale Junior and Infant School, as well as being able to share a wide range of specialist expertise and resources such as sports and drama facilities.”

Anthony Guise, head teacher at Calder High School, added the merger would provide “exciting new opportunities” and would ensure children continue to progress though key stages of their education.

The proposal is due to be discussed by Calderdale Council’s Cabinet on March 6.

A report to councillors outlines that the Department for Education has committed the £1.38m funding towards the move.

It also includes an objection from the governors of Scout Road Academy and Burnley Road Academy, both in Mytholmroyd, and Luddendenfoot Academy, who say the move will create more primary places than demand requires and will threaten the financial viability of the academies and other schools in the area.

Janis Hambling, Friends of Cragg Vale School chair, said: “We are pleased to be getting closer to a resolution for our children, staff and parents. Moving to the Calder High site will support our aim of staying together as a school community.

“We have all actively supported the consultation process and whatever the final outcome it’s still clear that Cragg Vale School is very much loved by its pupils, their families and teachers, and continues to be a very successful, thriving and happy school.”

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