Shropshire schools celebrate teaching collaboration and open new classrooms
A Shropshire school with 38 pupils has joined forces with a nearby school and celebrated the opening of a new space to learn in.
Pupils at Stiperstones Church of England Primary School have been making the trip to Norbury Primary School on the outskirts of Bishop's Castle to be taught since the beginning of the year.
The move came after funding worries led Shropshire Council's cabinet to transfer the provision for the education of pupils at Stiperstones to the site of Norbury Primary School and Nursery.
An open day officially marked the occasion, while also providing the opportunity to showcase a new nursery and reception classrooms built at Norbury for pupils of both schools to learn in.
The school in Stiperstones, six miles south of Pontesbury, had previously been without a nursery for two years.
Shropshire Hills Federation, which runs the primary schools in Norbury, Chirbury and Stiperstones, said it was struggling with funding last year.
It now means pupils at the school in Stiperstones, which will remain open, will be taught in the new building at Norbury.
Ruth Houghton, Liberal Democrat councillor for Bishop's Castle, said: "The community has been fundraising for many years to achieve this goal and education money topped this up. We now have a superb new building which will house nursery classes for children from both Norbury and Stiperstones schools. Both schools now being educated on the Norbury site."
Councillor Heather Kidd, vice chairman of school governors, said: "I was bowled over by this new facility when I visited. It now provides everything that staff thought they needed to provide top grade education for these young children. Stiperstones has been without a nursery for two years. They now have a building designed for them to join Norbury children. It should give them all a great start to excellent education.
"I also visited the other classes and saw Stiperstones' children and those from Norbury all working exceedingly well together, all engaged and learning. Two schools on one site, truly good to see."
The change was signed off by Shropshire Council's cabinet at a meeting last summer, following a four-week consultation led by the Shropshire Hills Federation.
Parents of the 38 students at Stiperstones were given the option of transferring them to either Norbury or Chirbury.
Karen Bradshaw, director of children's services at Shropshire Council, said at the time that the majority of parents stated a preference for their children to be taught at the Norbury site, with a small number preferring Chirbury.