Review of Buckie schools will not be prelude to closure

A REVIEW OF SCHOOLS in Buckie is to be undertaken to ensure the highest standard of education and facilities are available to schools in the area.

Councillors sitting in the children and young people’s services committee agreed to consider the review earlier today after being updated on the ‘Schools for the Future’ review carried out by Council officers earlier this year.

That included an audit of the sustainability of primary and secondary schools in the Buckie Associated Schools Group (ASG), which highlighted the unsustainability of four primary schools, all operating at less than 50% capacity.

The review also made recommendations for streamlining the school estate and making the best use of spare capacity in primary schools.

Committee members agreed to consider a future review that the chairman, Councillor Tim Eagle, reassured would not focus on school closures, rather making sure all young people have access to quality education and facilities.

Councillor Eagle said: “We’ve carried out Schools for the Future reviews in other ASGs, and Buckie is no different.

“What we’re looking to do across Moray is secure best value for the council, and provide the best learning environment possible. We will continue to fully involve staff, pupils and parents in any discussions which may take place in the future.”

Councillors also agreed to consider a new-build for Buckie High School in the future, which could see a joint campus with a new-build Cluny Primary School, along with nursery provision and a community hub.

A report to the committee noted that “although the school [Buckie High School] has been well cared for it is not a school for the 21st century”, with condition of the school at B standard, suitability at C standard and safety and security rated at D standard.

Currently at 75% capacity, the number of pupils enrolled at Buckie High School is set to soar, with 94% capacity forecasted for 2024.