Consultation opens into plans to close three small rural schools in West Sussex

A consultation has opened into controversial plans to close up to three small rural schools in West Sussex.

The County Council is considering proposals to close Clapham and Patching C of E Primary School in Worthing, Stedham Primary School in Midhurst and Rumboldswhyke C of E Infant School in Chichester, which all have fewer than 100 pupils.

Angry parents and pupils staged a protest outside County Hall in Chichester last month against the plans.

A fourth school - Warninglid - would relocate to a new site two miles away under the plans. It will also forge strong links with another primary school.

The council says schools must not only be big enough to be viable for the future but should be able to offer a broad curriculum too, and change is necessary.

But many families say their children benefit from smaller class sizes and a nurturing environment.