Consultation on proposal to reduce the PAN at Eldwick Primary School

To be completed by: Thu 15 Dec 2022


Time: -Thu 15 Dec 2022 | Venue:


Statutory consultation on the proposed reduction of the Published Admission Number at Eldwick Primary School for the 2024/25 academic year

Background

 

The current Published Admission Number (PAN) at Eldwick Primary School is 75. This means that the number of children admitted to the school in reception each year is a maximum of 75.

 

When planning primary school places in Bradford, the District is split into 26 primary school planning areas. Eldwick Primary School sits in the Bingley 1 planning area.

 

According to data from the Office of National Statistics (ONS), the number of live births nationally fell for five consecutive years up to 2020, with the total number of live births in 2020 being the fewest since 2002. There was a slight increase in 2021 but still fewer births than in 2019. Given the falling number of births nationally and across the District, this has led to a high level of surplus places in some of the primary school planning areas, including Bingley 1, where Eldwick Primary School is situated.

 

According to data from the Office of National Statistics (ONS), the number of live births nationally fell for five consecutive years up to 2020, with the total number of live births in 2020 being the fewest since 2002. A slight increase was seen in 2021 but there were still fewer births than in 2019. Given the falling number of births nationally and across the District, the Council does not anticipate that the numbers of children requiring school places in the Bingley 1 planning area will increase significantly in the near future.

 

Over recent years, there has been a significant reduction in the number of reception places required across this planning area. In response to this reduction, Trinity All Saints C of E Primary School reduced their PAN from 60 to 30 in September 2022, reducing the PAN for this planning area to 255.

 

Since the PAN was increased in 2014, Eldwick has recorded only a small number of vacancies in reception on the January Census. However, only 64 pupils started in reception in September 2022, meaning there are 11 vacancies. Eldwick Primary School is forecast to have fewer than 60 reception pupils in 2024, 2025 and 2026.

 

Across the Bingley 1 planning area, there were 255 reception places available for allocations in 2022, with the total number of places allocated on National Offer Day being 206, leaving 49 vacancies.

 

The proposed PAN reduction will provide 240 places in the planning area for September 2024. Current published forecasts indicate that the numbers of reception places required in reception for the next four intake years across Bingley 1 are:

2023/24:         213

2024/25:         193

2025/26:          199

2026/27:          193

 

The Local Authority’s forecast information has been used to model the school’s budget over the next five years. This process showed that if the PAN remains at 75 the school will face financial difficulty. The proposed PAN reduction will help to ensure the school is in a financially stable position in future years.

 

The School Admissions Code requires that all admission authorities consult where they propose to reduce a PAN. Bradford Council, as the Admission Authority, is therefore seeking representations on the proposed change to the PAN for Eldwick Primary School in the Bingley 1 planning area.

 

In accordance with the School Admissions Code (2021), The Council is consulting with key stakeholders, including;

  • Eldwick Primary School – Head/Governing Board/Staff
  • Parents/carers of current pupils and prospective parents of pupils
  • All other Admission Authorities within the District
  • Neighbouring Local Authorities
  • Councillors and MPs
  • Trade Unions
  • Anyone else who has an interest in the proposed changes

 

A copy has been sent to the Office of the Schools Adjudicator and the proposal will be published on Eldwick Primary school’s website.

 

This consultation will run for six weeks from Thursday 3 November 2022 to Thursday 15 December 2022, after which time any representations received will be considered and a report taken to the Council’s Executive Committee for a decision to be made on the PAN for Eldwick Primary School.

 

Specific Proposal

 

Bradford Council proposes to reduce the PAN at Eldwick Primary School from 75 to 60 from 1 September 2024.

 

This means that the maximum number of pupils intended to be admitted in Reception in 2024, and all subsequent Reception cohorts, will be 60. There will be no impact on children who already have a place at the school in other year groups.

 

Factors that have been considered by the Council when deciding to consult on this proposal include:

 

  • A large portion of funding received by schools is directly related to the number of pupils attending the school. Too many vacancies mean that schools will not receive the maximum possible revenue. Therefore, the Council is proposing to reduce the number of available places to ensure the school can continue to operate efficiently and cost effectively.
  • The school is located in Bingley 1 planning area where there continues to be a falling demand for primary school places, resulting in a significant surplus across the area.
  • The total number of pupils from reception to Year 6 recorded by the school on the October 2022 census was 508, which is below the current capacity of 525.
  • Due to the lower numbers of younger children registered with the NHS who will require a school place in the coming years, the Council forecasts that there will be sufficient school places available for local children if the PAN is reduced. If agreed, the overall PAN for the Bingley 1 planning area will be 240 from 2024.
  • Should circumstances change in the future in the number of children requiring a primary school place, Bradford Council will work with local schools to ensure all children can be placed in a local school.

 

Bradford Council believes that reducing the PAN will assist the school to provide stability in their long-term planning and allow them to deliver high quality educational outcomes for the pupils currently on roll. The reduction in PAN will ensure that an appropriate number of places are provided for future pupils, in line with forecasts.

Any representations should be made on the online survey https://online1.snapsurveys.com/PANconsultationEldwick. Alternatively, if you would prefer a paper copy of the response form, please email SufficiencyConsultation@bradford.gov.uk quoting Eldwick Primary School PAN reduction.


Consultation

Published: 01/12/2022
Audience: Headteachers of Bradford District Primary and Nursery Schools
Contact: Sufficiency Team

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