Parents launch petition to save St Rose's school
PARENTS have voiced concerns about the uncertain future of St Rose’s School in Stroud.
The special educational needs school, which last year celebrated its centenary, could face closure because it is no longer financially viable due to a substantial fall in the number of pupils.
A petition set up by parents to save St Rose’s School has attracted more than 1,000 signatures.
Eleven-year-old Emily Phillips, who has cerebral palsy, was transferred to St Rose’s two years ago following a tribunal which determined that the state SEN school she attended was not able to meet her needs.
Her parents Heather and Gareth say the care and education at St Rose’s is absolutely crucial for her health and wellbeing.
“All of the parents are so distraught because we know our children’s needs can’t be met anywhere else,” said Heather, of Stonehouse, who also has sons Tom, five, and George, seven.
“Emily is stuck with a condition that stops her speaking and moving which can be frustrating for her but staff make her feel very secure and calm. For her education and care to stop or take a complete diversion would be detrimental.”
St Rose’s School, owned by the Dominican Sisters charity, receives most of its funding from Gloucestershire County Council based on the total number of pupils at the school.
Parents were sent a letter last week explaining that a recovery plan is being put in place. There are concerns that the drop in students is due to changes in government funding for education of children with special needs, which came into effect in April this year.
However, GCC says there has been no change in the authority’s approach to admissions to St Rose’s.
Tim Browne, head of special educational needs and disabilities, said: “We are not the only local authority that places children there.
“We’ve always looked to place children and young people in our own schools where possible – that’s a requirement by law and we’re continuing to invest in and develop our own special schools.
“Only if one of our schools is unable to meet a child’s needs, even with additional support in place, would we consider an independent, specialist provision.
“We will continue to fund places at the school if the annual reviews confirm that is the most appropriate setting to meet the child’s needs.”
Sign the petition at www.ipetitions.com/petition/stop-st-roses-school-from-closing
Comments are closed on this article.