Immigration fuels overcrowding crisis at secondary schools, report warns

Secondary schools will struggle to accommodate tens of thousands of pupils as high immigration levels have left them facing chronic overcrowding, a leaked government document warns. This is from the Telegraph

The combination of a steady increase in the number of births and a threefold increase in net long-term migration since the mid-1990s means the problem could reach crisis point within two years, the report suggests.

The ‘restricted’ paper prepared by the Department for Education says ministers have “faced fears of an impending shortage for some years” and cites evidence from the Home Office that the “impact of immigration has been substantial”.

It is said to be “an important contributory factor, through both the arrival of migrant children and the high birth rates of some migrant groups”.

According to the seven-page document, an extra 35,000 secondary school places will be required by 2015 to cope with the increased number of pupils.

It says: “This shortage of places is the direct result of the increase in the birth rates since 2002 and the surge in net migration since the mid-1990s.”

Many secondary schools have already started to suffer from problems of overcrowding, with one in five reported to be either full or accepting more pupils than they have capacity for.

Some local authorities are opening extra large schools to cater for 2,000 or more pupils.

…Stephen Twigg, Labour’s education spokesman, said: “More than three years in to this parliament, David Cameron and Michael Gove bear the full responsibility for the primary places crisis that they have presided over.”

However, Michael Gove, the Education Secretary, claimed Labour “were warned repeatedly that they hadn’t done enough to plan for a growing population – and once more it’s been left to the Coalition government to clean up the mess”.

He said: “Labour cut 200,000 primary places, slashed the amount spent on areas of population growth, and let immigration soar – and all this in the middle of a baby boom.”

More at:  Immigration fuels overcrowding crisis at secondary schools, report warns

Are plans being made at your/your child’s school and in your local area to cope with the likely increase in number of pupils who will be moving through to secondary level in the coming years? Please let us know…

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Comments

  1. andylutwyche

    SchoolsImprove I wish the politicians would stop blaming each other over this and actually try to deal with it. MP’s showing true colours

  2. andylutwyche

    LeeJasper SchoolsImprove Possibly, but if places required why don’t attempt provide them rather than just arguing about whose fault it is

  3. LeeJasper

    andylutwyche SchoolsImprove I agree it’s a shortage of places rather than too many immigrants. Blame politicians & bankers not immigrants

  4. Janet2

    The Mail on Sunday has picked up the story.  It’s emblazoned on its front page under headline “Migrant influx fuels new crisis: Now secondary schools face ‘timebomb’ shortage of places, reveals secret report.”
    The Mail says previous ministers were “repeatedly warned” about the growing numbers but ignored warnings and instructed councils to close schools where there was a surplus.  But local authorities are legally obliged to manage the supply of school places and have to close schools if there is a surplus.
    Later in the article the Mail concedes that the extra figures were also caused by the “baby boom”.  The National Audit Office said the increase in number of births in the early 2000s was partly due to immigration but also because women who had delayed child birth until their 30s were now catching up.

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