Two Bideford schools amalgamate

children playing school

Posted on: 22 September 2015

Two long-established Bideford community schools have amalgamated to form one Primary School, with the potential to become the largest of its kind in Devon.

Pynes Infant and Nursery and West Croft Junior Schools have been separate schools for more than 50 years, but now the Department for Education has given the schools approval to merge.

Following the retirement of the previous Head Teacher at Pynes, Acting Head Teacher, Jo Dymond and the Head of the Junior School, Andrew Brierley saw the opportunity to develop closer links, culminating in the creation of West Croft School.

Head Teacher of the new school, Andrew Brierley said:

“This is a momentous event for not only the pupils, parents and staff but for the community as a whole.

“Although relations between the two separate schools were always good, we only ever got to see half of a child’s development; the first four years at Pynes and the second four at West Croft.  Becoming a Primary School enables us to get the whole picture.

“We consulted widely with our parents and were thrilled by the level of support for the amalgamation.  It was clearly something that the community had been considering for a long time and I am very proud to have been involved in its inception.

“We are committed to delivering high-quality teaching and learning.  Having the capacity for 630 pupils means that every year we educate a significant number of the future citizens of Bideford.  This is a great responsibility and we have to get it right, to contribute not just to the education of the pupils but potentially to the economic and social well-being of our wonderful town.”

Councillor James McInnes, Devon County Council’s Cabinet Member responsible for schools, said:

“Having a smooth path between Nursery,  Infants and  Juniors is better for everyone”.

Councillor Robin Julian, Devon County Councillor for Bideford South and Hartland, said:

“All the children will be staying at the same school throughout, which will cause much less disruption with their learning.”

Posted in: Education