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April 23 2014.

Seaford’s last mainstream boarding school, Newlands, is to close on the 9th of July, Seaford’s Lib Dem MP Norman Baker has discovered. He calls the closure “Regrettable and a sad day for Seaford”.

Parents have contacted Norman to express concerns for pupils who will be left in uncertain positions if the school is to close at the end of this academic year.

The school previously faced closure in 2006 but was saved thanks to the generosity of two of the parents, but once again faces an uncertain future for pupils, staff and parents. Shortly after this Norman introduced a Bill to Parliament to protect pupils from sudden closures of schools.

Now Norman has written to Beaconhouse Educational Centre, the organisation that owns and operates the school to express concerns and also to East Sussex County Council to ask what support the Council may be able to provide.

Norman says: “The likely closure of Newlands is extremely regrettable and a sad day for Seaford. It is unfortunate for the community which will lose a good school, for the staff who now find themselves out of work, but most especially for the children, who will have their education uprooted. I hope even at this day that a rescue package can be put in place to keep the school open. 

“It is important, if the school does close, that there is full community engagement about what should happen to the site. In particular, it is important that there green lungs are not lost to development.”