PRESS RELEASE FROM THE RT HON PETER LILLEY MP
Thursday March 18th 2010
LILLEY PRAISES HERTS FOR IMPROVING SECONDARY TRANSFER
Peter Lilley, MP for Hitchin and Harpenden, has congratulated the Hertfordshire county education authorities for the way they have responded to the pressure for secondary school places but called for the speediest possible effort to ensure all Wheathampstead children get a place in a chosen school.
He said: “This year was expected to be one of the most difficult for secondary school transfer because of the number of parents opting out of private education and entering the state system in response to the recession.
“So it is a pleasing to note that Herts County Council provided extra places ahead of the problem, especially in Harpenden.
“As a result, only three children in the town have yet to be offered one of their preferred schools, while in Kimpton there are just six children in this position.
“The major disappointment is Wheathampstead, where seventeen pupils have yet to be offered a place at one of their chosen secondary schools.
“I will do all in my power to ensure that these children achieve a place at a school of their choice.
“In previous years, virtually every pupil from Wheathampstead, as elsewhere in the district, has secured a place at a ranked school, but I know how nerve-wracking and stressful it is for parents and children to be on continuing interest lists while the allocation process goes on.
“However, Wheathampstead pupils and parents should be closer to the top of the lists this year because there is less pressure for places from other areas. I will be keeping a very close eye on their situation. The proposed new secondary school in the north of the St Albans District will eventually ease the problem in Wheathampstead but in the meantime it is important to take the same sort of measures there as were rightly taken to ease the problems in greater Harpenden.”
Further information from John Allen