County has enough primary school places

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THE county’s education chief has said there are enough primary school places across the county.

The message comes from Councillor Peter Edgar, executive member for education for Hampshire County Council.

Yesterday the Local Government Authority predicted that in two years time almost 50 per cent of primary schools in the country will not have enough primary school places.

But Cllr Edgar said that this year, the county council handled more than 14,000 applications for children starting primary schools this month – with 97.8 per cent getting their preferred choice.

He said: ‘We’re not anticipating a shortage of school places in the coming years, thanks to our extensive planning and our commitment to invest £165m in new schools and extensions over the next three years to provide 8,000 new school places.

‘In the current academic year alone, we have ensured more than 900 additional new school places have been made available.

‘School places forecasting is a complex business.

‘It relies not just on birth rates, but planned new housing.’