PARENTS from a South Somerset village have hit out at plans to overhaul the education system which would see their local school shut.

Misterton First School, which was rated ‘Good’ in its last Ofsted report, would be shut if the latest proposals from Somerset County Council are approved.

On October 21, the cabinet agreed to send their plans to transform the education provision for Ilminster, Crewkerne and surrounding villages to a public consultation.

Banners have been put up outside Misterton School protesting the potential closure - which would see the village left without any school at all.

Liz Rodford is one of the parents opposing the plans.

She said: “It is understood that although the council cite educational reasons behind this change, it appears to be solely financial.”

A council report published before last week’s vote confirmed that the SCC had previous written off accrued debt, but that Wadham School was in the black once again and likely to be £1.8million in debt by September 2022.

The report added: “The driver for change is securing the high-quality education including a broad curriculum, particularly in Key Stage 4, in the Ilminster and Crewkerne area.

“This objective is put at risk by the long-running and increasing, budgetary overspend at Wadham Upper School as a result of low pupil numbers.”

Mrs Rodford added: “The proposal has come at a very difficult time for many people due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

“The parental feeling is that SCC is not taking any consideration to the children, staff and parents of Misterton Schools mental wellbeing, many of whom feel deeply anxious about changes and are having to cope with living in the ‘new normal’.”

The county council added that Misterton pupils can go to any of the local first schools being turned into a primary.

The nearest is St Bartholomews, which is almost two miles away and not on a route which is safe to walk.

Liz said: “Maiden Beech Academy would also be changed from a middle school to a primary, again changing a high achieving school to further support Wadham.

“While parents agree that children of all stages of education deserve the highest possible support, the need for systemic change to education in the area to support just one of its schools seems illogical.”

The public consultation is expected to run for four weeks in November.