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Campaign for new non-selective secondary school in The Weald gathering momentum

  • Support Weald Schooling group opens public petition
  • Campaign calls on parents and community members for support
  • Real opportunity to bring schooling closer to home

Support Weald Schooling - a community campaign to build a new non-selective secondary school for The Weald - is quickly gathering momentum.

The Weald is recognised as a ‘cold spot’ by the Department for Education which acknowledges Cranbrook and its surrounding villages have inadequate non-selective secondary school provision.

As a result, children across The Weald must travel for up to an hour each way to schools up to 10 miles away from their home. Every day, busloads of youngsters can be seen heading out to secondary schools as far afield as Tenterden, Wadhurst, Maidstone and Paddock Wood.

High demand

In 2023, there were 525 Year 6 children across The Weald who attended primary schools within seven miles of Cranbrook. There is clearly a need and demand for a non-selective secondary school closer to home.

Fractured communities

With children’s friendship groups scattered across a large area, rural communities within The Weald lack a sense of community. Children needing to board the school bus home are unable to take part in afterschool clubs, weakening their social connections and limiting their opportunities to play sport or gain extra-curricular skills.

Whole community issue

The provision of a new non-selective secondary school is an urgent matter for the whole community, not just primary school aged children. Bringing a new secondary school into the heart of the High Weald will restore a sense of community, help businesses thrive and enable families and friends to live and learn together locally.

Support Weald Schooling is actively collecting signatures and student data to take to the Department for Education. If a strong enough case can be proven for a new non-selective secondary school, change will happen.

People can Support Weald Schooling by:

  • Signing the petition at supportwealdschooling.co.uk or by scanning this QR code
  • Asking their friends and family members to do the same
  • Joining the public consultation meetings in the coming weeks – details to follow

“There is absolutely no denying the fact the High Weald needs and deserves a new non-selective secondary school,” says Cllr Kim Fletcher, Chairman of Cranbrook & Sissinghurst Parish Council. “Whether you’re a parent, local resident or business owner within the affected areas, I would urge you to show your support and sign the petition. These signatures, alongside evidence and data gathered by the Support Weald Schooling campaign group, will bring this new non-selective school closer to home for the benefit of our local children and communities for generations to come.”

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