Concerns as schools reach capacity

Dunnottar Primary School
Dunnottar Primary School

Seven schools in the Mearns area have been at full capacity for over a year.

At last weeks Area Committee meeting it was revealed that Auchenblae, Dunnottar, Drumoak, Gourdon, Laurencekirk, Portlethen and St Cyrus had all been at 100% capacity since 2014.

The issues as regarding to Dunnottar school were discussed at last weeks Community Council meeting.

Vice-Chairperson and Planning Secretary for Stonehaven Community Council Phil Mills-Bishop has called on Aberdeenshire Council to make a “firm commitment” to alleviate the situation.

He said: “Neither myself or the Stonehaven Community Council is critical of Dunnottar Primary School operation per se. In Lisa Williams we are lucky to have one of the best young head teachers going. Moreover, the teaching staff excels despite the physical constraints of the School and in terms of teaching outcomes pupils have equally responded brilliantly.

“However, eventually even if the current pupil roll remains, or more likely as predicted by Aberdeenshire Council themselves rises to 164% over the next few years, teaching moral and pupil outcomes will be affected.

“Dunnottar is the only Primary School in Aberdeenshire to have a ‘D rating’ for ‘Suitability’ and has been so rated since 2009. This is why the Community Council engaged in January with Isobel Davidson and Craig Clement to commit to a short and long plan put forward by the Stonehaven Community Council.

“From that plan a rezoning exercise will shortly take place, additional computers have been allocated along with more dinning tables.”

Aberdeenshire Council Chief Executive Jim Savage will attend the next Community Council Forum later this month where the issue will be brought to him.