Demand for Blackpool secondary school places to rise sharply in next five years

The number of secondary school places in Blackpool is set to exceed demand despite a sharp rise in students over the next five years

The number of secondary students in Blackpool will rise by 9 per cent over the next five years.

The late st forecast from the Department for Education (DfE) shows Blackpool Council will have 7,297 students aged 11 to 16 in 2023/24 – 618 more than this year.

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The 7,723 secondary places available in 2016/17 in the resort would be enough to meet demand in five years, unlike in 71 English councils where students demand is growing at a higher pace than schools capacity.

Besides Blackpool, another 65 other local authorities will also see supply stay ahead of demand for places

The data measures total school capacity but is not broken into age ranges so, according to teaching unions, under-capacity in specific year groups could be masked by the figures.

Chairman of the Local Government Association’s children and young people board Anntoinette Bramble said: “It makes no sense for councils to be given the responsibility to plan for school places but then not allowed to open schools themselves.”

A DfE spokespman said: “This Government has driven the largest creation in school places in two generations and by 2020 there will be 1m more new places across the school system than there were in 2010.”

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