Hobkirk Primary set to be ‘mothballed’

A rural primary school could be mothballed by Scottish Borders Council following several years of falling pupil numbers.

Hobkirk Primary School now has a pupil roll of zero.
Hobkirk Primary School now has a pupil roll of zero.

A report which recommends mothballing Hobkirk Primary School for a temporary period will be considered by Scottish Borders Council’s Executive Committee on Tuesday (November 3).

If members of the executive agree to the move, the report also recommends the decision be reviewed within 12 months.

The report details that the school had seven pupils – one in P3, two in P5, three in P6 and one in P7, with one of the P5 pupils leaving the area shortly. Four of these pupils are currently transported into Hobkirk Primary School from Southdean and Chesters, the other three live within the two-mile walking radius of the school.

The falling numbers have led to the parents of the existing pupils lodging placing requests – and they have been granted, leaving the school roll at zero.

The report also states there are two four-year-olds living in the existing catchment area. In the last three years no children have started at Hobkirk. Consultation with the pre-school parents intimates that the children will enrol at Denholm and Trinity Primary Schools for school session 16/17.

The report adds that parents of pupils at Denholm Primary have been consulted.