Shropshire Star

Bridgnorth school planning to axe sixth-form provision

A Shropshire market town is set to lose its sixth-form provision after a headteacher has launched a consultation over plans to axe further education courses at his school.

Last updated
Lee Tristham outside Oldbury Wells School in Bridgnorth

Oldbury Wells School in Bridgnorth is the only school in the town that offers sixth-form courses.

The school announced in March this year that it had to cut back on the number of A-level course it offered, but now headteacher at the school, Lee Tristham, has launched a consultation to ask families and members of the local community for their views on the potential closure of all sixth-form provision.

He said: “After careful consideration by trustees, governors and the school’s leadership team, given regarding the long-term viability of sixth form provision, we have provided all our families and school partners with detailed information about the reasons for the consultation and welcome their views which can be given by written response or attending a public consultation on Thursday, September 28 - all details are available on the school website."

The consultation paper released by the school says that the current financial climate presents a "challenge for governors and school leaders in setting budgets".

It adds that: "Schools with small sixth forms find it increasingly difficult to deliver a wide curriculum offer due to the risk of non-viable class sizes."

It concludes: "Consideration is being given to no new student intake in September 2024, and potential closure in September 2025; this will have no impact on existing Year 12 & 13 students who would complete all qualifications at Bridgnorth Sixth Form."

Mr Tristham said: “We are fully committed to providing the very best educational provision for all our young people. However, the challenges of continuing to run a small school-based sixth form mean that there is a need to review our provision.

"I understand that this news will be a concern for families across our community and we will be actively working to receive feedback.

"In addition, we will continue to work with wider post 16 providers to ensure that all students considering next steps into post 16 provision are fully supported while important decisions are made.

"I would like to stress that should a decision be made to close the sixth form provision, all students who are currently studying within the sixth form will complete all their qualifications with us”.

If the school goes ahead and stops sixth-form provision, there will be no A-level or higher education courses available in Bridgnorth.

Nearby Bridgnorth Endowed school stopped providing sixth-form courses in 2019 following a similar consultation process.

More information can be found at