MORAY COUNCILLORS HAVE received a report on consultations over school catchment areas and are being asked to take a decision on these in November.
Extensive consultation on proposed changes to catchment areas for six primary schools in Elgin have now been completed with parents, parent councils, staff, trade unions and community groups all having had an opportunity to have their say.
Education officers at the local authority warned that failure to redraw catchment boundaries and address capacity issues would increase the risk of children being unable to attend their zoned school.
According to forecasts the six Elgin primary schools will exceed their current capacities by 2020 – leading to officers recommending new zones for Bishopmill, Seafield, West End, East End, New Elgin and Greenwards Primary Schools.
In addition officers are recommending that a catchment area should be agreed for a new primary school that would serve the rapidly expanding south-east of Elgin – and progress through the stages required to establish that school by August 2016.
There is a further proposal to be considered at a later date for a new primary to the north of Elgin where 1500 homes are expected to be built over the next 20 to 30 years.
According to Education Scotland, who considered the educational aspects of the proposals, there will be a number of educational benefits, their response saying: “They should lead to important improvements in the quality of learning environments for children, along with improved transitions for children from early learning and childcare settings to P1 at school.”