The independent London newspaper

Carlton is a hugely impressive school – think again

22 November, 2019

Michael Palin

• I’M immensely proud of my association with Carlton Primary School and most concerned about recent rumours of its closure, (Carlton School: Parents warned another primary school could face closure, November 11).

Whenever I visit Carlton I’m hugely impressed by the atmosphere. I have rarely been in a happier school. The staff have created a bright, lively, colourful environment in which the children seem to thrive.

Bearing in mind that more than 70 per cent of them do not have English as first language, engaging with children from so many backgrounds is a considerable achievement, and I cannot commend the head and her staff more highly for creating such a welcoming environment in such difficult circumstances.

I’m aware of falling rolls, but also aware that Camden are committed to building new homes in the area. New homes will surely create more demand for school places, and to close a school with the qualifications of Carlton seems a waste of one of the borough’s more successful educational assets.

As a local resident, as well as patron of the school, I would urge Camden to step back from the brink and let no decision on the future of Carlton Primary School be rushed through before all the alternatives have been considered, and the expertise of the staff, the educational facilities that the school premises could provide, and the vital role Carlton occupies here in the in the heart of Gospel Oak, be duly recognised.



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