CamdenNewJournal

The independent London newspaper

To close Carlton Primary School would be short-sighted

28 November, 2019

• FOR well over a century, parents have been sending their children to Carlton Primary School. Now the school is threatened with closure. Such a closure would be short-sighted.

Falling pupil numbers are given as the reason the school is under threat. But Camden Council plans to build a thousand more homes in the area, creating inevitable need for more school places.

Does the council really envisage shutting Carlton only to open a new school years later? And have they considered what that would do to the community?

A good school like Carlton is a family; pupils, staff and parents build lasting relationships across social divides.

For many pupils Carlton is a place of safety and stability in otherwise uncertain lives. It is to their teachers that they turn if their home lives are turned upside down.

This kind of trust, once lost, is lost for good. And that is exactly what closing Carlton Primary School would mean.

Friends would be spread between other schools. Teachers would leave the area, and bonds forged over generations would be destroyed.

Camden faces many challenges, not least the scourge of drug and knife crime. The relationships built by schools like Carlton are vital in helping to tackle these problems, and supporting young people to thrive.

Camden Council must ask themselves: are they willing to pay the price for closing Carlton?

JACK FLEMING
Liberal Democrat Candidate, Haverstock by-election

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