Councillors to consider options for mothballed Longhaven school

Council officers have been asked to set out the future options for a mothballed rural school.

Wednesday, 1st September 2021, 8:18 am
Updated Wednesday, 1st September 2021, 8:18 am
There seems to be little prospect of the council deciding to reopen Longhaven School - and little appetite from the community for that to happen.

The Longhaven School was temporarily closed in 2018 following difficulties to appoint a new head teacher.

Pupils were relocated to schools nearby and Longhaven has never reopened since. In 2019, Aberdeenshire Council’s education and children’s services committee approved an options appraisal to begin to assess the school’s future.

From consultations and an online survey, most parents were not in favour of the school reopening citing concerns about the viability of a school with low pupil numbers. Other respondents did want to see the school reopen but many of them did not have children of primary school age who would attend.

Councillor Gillian Owen, committee chair, said: “I am pleased to see the efforts officers made to ensure members of the community had their say on whether or not Longhaven School should reopen and how the school building should be used. This feedback from the community will now play an important part in the committee working with the council on the next steps.”

Committee vice chair Councillor Rosemary Bruce added: “We don’t take the decision to mothball a school lightly. At the heart of an issue such as this is the educational wellbeing of the children. We have to ensure they receive the best education possible in a learning environment that suits their needs.”

The committee will consider a further report in December which will include the next steps for the school.​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​