FURIOUS parents whose children have been allocated school places miles from their homes have started a petition.
The group wants West Sussex County Council to add a reception class to one of the four town centre schools – either at Heene, Lyndhurst, Elm Grove or Springfield First.
It comes in the wake of the Herald’s two stories focusing on children who lived in the town centre, but had been allocated school places either at Durrington First or Hawthorns First School, both of which are around three miles away.
Peter Lowe, whose four-year-old son Jamie is one of those affected, is leading the campaign, and said he has come across at least 25 families in the same position as his.
They almost all live south of Rowlands Road and east of Grand Avenue, but despite in many cases choosing their catchment school as their number one preference, they have been unsuccessful in getting a place there.
They believe it is due to a quirk in the system that allows parents who have chosen that school as a second or third choice, but who live closer, to get a space for their child ahead of people like Peter who live further away.
Peter, 43, of Milton Road, said: “I still feel this could all have been avoided through fair allocation of spaces.
“Why offer someone a place at Heene First School who chose it as second or third choice just because they are closer than ourselves?”