THE fundraising efforts of a school community “has provided a ray of hope” as the institution “navigates turbulent waters” due to the cost-of-living crisis.

Parents, staff, and teachers joined forces after Chard School launched its fundraising and recruitment campaign.

A spokesperson for the school said: “Chard School, a cherished institution in our community since 1671, has navigated turbulent waters in recent months.

“As with many other independent schools, the cost-of-living crisis has sadly resulted in reduced enrolment.

“However, in the spirit of resilience and unity, the parents of Chard School have joined forces, pooling their diverse professional skills and launching an inspiring fundraising and recruitment campaign to secure the school's future.

“The collective efforts of our dedicated parents, talented teachers, and caring support staff have yielded encouraging results, fostering a sense of hope and determination within the school community.”

Henny Grant, a parent at the school, said: “Chard School, its teachers, pupils, and parents are like one big family. It’s such a very special place.”

The spokesperson also said: "Recognising the need for additional funding to secure the school's long-term viability and heritage buildings, Chard School is in the midst of an ongoing fundraising and recruitment campaign.

"The response from the school community has been heartening, with an influx of support from various quarters.

"The school has unveiled a raft of fee incentives for both existing and prospective students.

"It is also actively engaging with other school groups, potential investors, and its Old Cerdic alumni to ensure that the capital needed to thrive is secured."

Neil Mayfield, chair of the governors of Chard School, said: "While we acknowledge the hurdles before us, the outpouring of support from our school community has been nothing short of inspiring.

“Our parents, many of whom are making sacrifices to send their children to us, have shown incredible dedication, and their fundraising efforts have provided a ray of hope that’s bringing an already close community even closer together.

“At Chard School, every child is a respected and valued individual. We strive to provide a caring, supportive environment based on exemplary values, where all children are given the attention, they need to flourish.

“We have already begun securing the new student enrolments needed to ensure the school’s future is a bright one.

“However, the journey is not over, economic headwinds remain, and we continue to work tirelessly to secure the financial foundation and enrolment numbers needed for Chard School's sustained success."