Having watched  the Executive Committee Meeting held on Tuesday 18th April, I was very unhappy and concerned with the handling of the agenda item on the proposed amalgamation of the Whitby Schools and contacted Mr Flinton and Cllr Les they have discharged the responsibility to yourselves!

It was clear from the start of the meeting that there was a bias towards the proposal and this was confirmed with a lack of response to the points made by myself and the other members of the public who had issues with the response written by Councillor Wilkinson.

In particular I made a complaint about the content of the minutes of the public meetings in Whitby which is very serious matter as they had a lot of missing content and mistakes- this like my other observations were completely ignored! It was quite clear to me that whatever issues raised by the majority of respondents who completed the consultation there was a predetermined outcome and the manner of Cllr Wilkinson’s responses and attitude of the executive that this was agreed well before this meeting took place?

One member of the executive committee for example who was asked to add her comments to the meeting, purported to be extremely familiar with the education system in Whitby having taught in all three schools and spoke in support of the amalgamation as a result of her experience?  This was at least an exaggeration as she was in fact a peripatetic music teacher in school once a week for approximately 8/10 weeks a term whereas Cllr Wilkinson had had contrary strong opinions from ex staff who had actually worked in the schools every day for many years and had vastly more experience of the three schools involved in the discussion!! Mr ####, an ex headteacher of Eskdale and considerably more experience in the Whitby Schools situation also had his letter/observations ignored! Another very biased opinion to persuade other members to vote in favour?

 In terms of the reasons behind the reasons for the proposal- the issues of financial mismanagement were disregarded and rather than concentrate on the financial situation ##### (Co-Chair of Governors) representing the governors had decided to take a different tack that would be more vote winning namely that they could increase the curriculum offer for Key Stage 3. A member of the governing body actually being there was impressive in itself, as other than the public meetings the governors have refused to engage with any meetings, including Whitby Town Council but clearly they had decided a new approach was more likely to succeed? As an ex careers leader of 30 years experience #######’s (Co-Chairs of Governors) promises were very misleading and not based on any facts nor how such a curriculum offer would work.

 The suggestion that broadening the Key Stage 4 curriculum is erroneous and unlikely to impact most students.  A couple of extra options are obviously always helpful at key stage 4 but the restrictions of the national curriculum and the core subjects restrictions plus ebacc etc and timetable logistics /facilities will always limit gcse level choices so I can’t see how there will be a vast difference in what students will ultimately able to study and change their futures!! Key Stage 4 subjects are simply foundation subjects- some are necessary for further study and these are already in the two schools curriculum others are nice to study but not significant ! The speech appears simply to be a tool this to sell the amalgamation without substance or forward planning. As for the progression to Key Stage 5 at Caedmon College this will the choice of all future students without interference from the governors or their appointed staff. I do hope that from the tone of ######’s (Co-Chair of Governors) submission that this will not involve the students receiving biased advice and guidance in order to achieve greater numbers staying on?

 In addition to the obvious issues presented and ignored at the meeting, what is happening about all the legal irregularities that have come to light during the consultation process?

The numerous redactions in confidential minutes to cover issues that the governors have discussed raise cause for concern. There are far more redactions than would be needed in the minutes of an honest and transparent body!

No one on the executive body questioned the financial situation and how the issues at Eskdale went from a predicted surplus in 2021 to a deficit of £70,000 in 2022?

The start budget in the confidential minutes contains financial transactions that should be questioned and investigated.

Misleading information and untruths abound including the issue of the 6th form contribution which no one can agree on, evidence appears to contradict comments made by different parties?

Far more serious is the question of whether this ‘federated governing body’ are even legal as the Department of Education have no evidence that they are?

The Executive Committee need to be questioning what is happening and question the actions of the Governing Body before moving forward on anything else, but nothing appears to have been done despite Cllr Wilkinson and Stuart Carlton being informed of the issues numerous times over the last few months.

 There are too many discrepancies surrounding this proposal to be ignored and based on the ‘Response’ document and the executive meeting it is also questionable whether Cllr Wilkinson has acted in a fair and unbiased manner whilst conducting this ‘consultation’.

The issues of financial mismanagement, the legalities of the actions of the Governors and the relationship with Stuart Carlton and the NY Coast opportunity fund alongside the monies given to the Caedmon 6th form have yet to be investigated or even acknowledged? Cllr Wilkinson, Cllr Les and Richard Flinton have been contacted about all the irregularities and yet still nothing has been done? Independent investigation is long overdue?


It is with profound regret that I feel the need to challenge your committee’s decision to accept the proposal offered by the Whitby Secondary Partnership to amalgamate the two secondary schools in Whitby and force the closure of Eskdale School.

Only four governors presented this proposal to NYCC, and by dint of local reorganisation NYC. In my opinion, the proposers did not form a significant or a democratic representation of the local community and therefore the proposal is without local support and possibly illegal. It was asserted that the proposal was tabled at a quorate meeting but the constitution and quorum figure for the partnership have never been shared with interested parties, even though both have been requested. I also understand from the local campaign groups that the Departrnent for Education does not recognise the Whitby Secondary Partnership. Is this correct?

I was unable to attend the Executive Meeting last Tuesday at County Hall. but I did send a written statement. I have watched the Youtube film of the committee meeting, and I was very disappointed that the written statements, including mine, were given such little attention. It was reported that hundreds of responses had been received through the consultation process; these were given scant regard or consideration by your members.

Two of your members used the opportunity to score cheap, party-political points rather than consider the heartfelt opinions of local people who had attended the two consultation meetings and spoken. Others had written, sometimes at great length, but again there was hardly any reference to these letters. Had your members read them?

Towards the end of the meeting, there was almost an air of self-congratulation because agreement had been reached on an ‘amalgamated school’. Many local people who did attend the meeting and those who watched the film are saddened because their hope for a real consultation process has been dashed on the rocks of those who have been cynically saying; - “It’s a done deal anyway.”

The tragedy here is that nearly everyone agrees that something needs to be done about surplus secondary places in Whitby. It should have been properly addressed twenty years ago but it was shelved and now the problem has become urgent. Unfortunately, when situations become urgent the impqrtant principles get lost in the rush. Urgent and important are not synonymous. The Partnership’s third stated principle about achieving the highest possible standards (surely, a key principle for all schools) has clearly been

forgotten when the proposal to place one thousand students on a 1920s site (not 1950s as suggested by your Councillor) with one pitch. How many of your members have visited the former Whitby School in the last five years? If they had, they would realise how unfit for purpose it is. Yes, there are playing fields within walking distance at the former Caedmon School, but this means crossing a busy main road. I have worked in and led several split site schools, but it is not something I would advocate, simply because it takes teachers away from their central role of enabling learning.

The second part of the proposal suggests enlarging the sixth form at the former Caedmon School site. Currently 136 students enjoy a partly refurbished building intended for 550 students. It is extremely doubtful that the sixth form will grow after a decade of haemorrhaging numbers to successful courses in Guisborough, Teesside and Scarborough. If the numbers do not improve, will we be talking about closing this site in five years’ time? Will a developer be interested in using the playing fields for housing?

The third part of the proposal is the technical closure of Eskdale School and the disposal of the buildings and site. This is the only 1950s building and apart from the flat roof, it is probably the most suitable and fit-for-purpose out of the three sites. It has large classrooms, wide staircases and wide corridors and has been adapted for wheelchair users. It also has a new 30 pitch, a properly designed bus turning area and park. If NYC sell it, will all the proceeds go towards improving standards of education and care for Whitby learners?

Finally, and most importantly, unless you turn the one pitch at the former Whitby School into a bus park and turning area, you will be putting 1.000 students at risk on the Mayfield Road and junction at the beginning and end of school every day. This does not include the added pressure of moving classes to and from the playing fields and over Mayfield Road every hour. This potential safety issue and my concern that educational standards cannot

be improved in an unfit building have encouraged me to find local support for a legally binding, Judicial Review.


I write to you today to  request an independent  review & Scrutiny of the Executives decision to move to the next stage of the process for the following reasons:

1. A number of the executives and Officers have had previous dealings with financing of Whitby 6th Form - part of Caedmon College. Resulting in £250,000 of public money being granted to the 6th form to "secure 6th form provision in Whitby" in 2020. This leads to questions about the impartially of the Executive on the matter of closing the school.

 2. Stuart Carlton was on the board of the NORTH YORKSHIRE COAST OPPOTUNITY AREA which granted £250,000 (approved by the Executive members) and they then gave another£114,272 (foi from Stuart Carlton) for a "sustainable and thriving 6th form" he was in the room but this money was not mentioned in the meeting or in the report.

. 3. The Executives refused to acknowledge fundamental issues with the Governing body, havenot questioned the report where the majority are against the proposal.

4. This is an important Educational decision for 11-16 year olds in Whitby, as well as 16+ provisions. Answers are needed about if the £614,272 of public money granted to the Whitby 6th form has been well spent.It is our belief because of previous money given through the executive and officers, the decision to close Eskdale was predetermined before the meeting on the 18th April, and that there is a lack of alternative options as they were not necessary.


Here we go again!

Will I be listened to or my questions answered third time around?


It is said the 2 main reasons for the proposal are that BOTH schools are facing significant financial challenges and suffering from low pupil numbers with 40% of spaces not occupied.


The second part of the reason is correct so something needs to happen but no other option apart from closing Eskdale has been looked at. Looking at students in the 3 buildings been used

Eskdale has 404 students in 510 places 79%

Caedmon Mayfield has 641 students in 1056 places 61%

Caedmon 6th form has 137 students in the now reduced 483 places 28.4% - It's reported £644,000 has been spent to reduce the capacity and make it more attractive but the numbers continue to drop with students preferring to travel to the well established 6th form colleges on Teesside and in Scarborough. It would appear that the Governors and officials of North Yorkshire Council have vested interests in keeping their vanity project alive.

How are the numbers going to treble quickly to make it viable?

How much is it costing just for energy to cater for 137 students?

Caedmon College spent £106,300 for the 2 schools on the school year ended July 2022. Its common knowledge that despite some Government help energy costs have gone up by a minimum of 300% to as much as 500% in older schools with a poor fabric . Simple arithmatic  tells me this school year will be a minimum of £318,900 but more likely to be £531,500 for both schools.

The Governors don't like to show the finances of the 6th Form in isolation so to get an idea of what the energy bill will be I have presumed it's a similar size to Eskdale which spent £41,700 on energy therefore will be paying a minimum of £125,100 but as much as £208,500 this year so

Eskdale will pay between £310 and  £516 per student based on having 404 in attendance .

The 6th Form with only 137 students is estimated at between £913 and £1521 per student.

I hope all the buildings are eco friendly but doubt it.


Regarding the finances of the schools

by looking at the Government websites for both schools it can be established that the school year that ended in July 2017 -


 Eskdale was showing a small deficit of - £23,400 but despite losing £70,700 in the year ending July 2022 it was still showing a revenue reserve of £44,200 therefore an improvement of £67,600 over the 5 years. Eskdale paid £1.24m for 27.8 full time teachers in year 2017-18 and 5 years later paid £1.9m for 28.3 teachers having paid £1.95m in year 2021-22 for 37.1 full time teachers - almost the same figure for 9 fewer .

Bought in Professional Setvices -

£62,500 in 2017-18 £139,800 in 2021-22.

Education Consultancy.

£ 5,600 in 2017-18 £  47,800 in 2021-22.


Caedmon College had £885,000 in the bank at the end of July 2017 and 5 years later were showing Revenue Reserve of - £394,400 a reduction of £1,279,400 despite making a profit of  £210,900 in 2021-22 a complete opposite to the Eskdale trends both run by the same Governors for North Yorkshire Council. L

Looking at the 3 categories highlighted in the Eskdale finances


Full time teachers in 2017-18 65.2 were paid £3.24m ,          and in 2021-22 47.3 were paid



Bought in Professional Services in 2017-18 was £94,900 and surprise surprise reduced to £71,000 in 2021-22.


Educational Consultancy  in 2017-18 was £54,600 and surprise surprise reduced to £33.1k  in 2021-22.


Eskdale suffered for a number of years when a Bully was head of the school once again the Governors and North Yorkshire Council are guilty of supporting him for so long until the teachers threatened to strike in late 2021, he was put on garden leave for 2 terms before eventually been paid off as were at least one of his victims. Its simple to see why Eskdale intake numbers have dropped.


Both schools got new head teachers in September  and the Governors recruited a very expensive Executive Head to oversee both schools - I ll ask again , were all conned into starting or did they all start knowing what was going to happen after 1 full term. If the proposal goes ahead will all 3 be employed?


It's obvious to me that Barrat who are encircling the Eskdale School and Playing fields on all sides have been lined up to give North Yorkshire Council some much needed revenue for the land and generate Council Tax for them without any extra infrastructure .


The Governors , North Yorkshire Council and the schools have not only refused to give information out but deliberately blocked requests for it even when freedom  of information requests were put in.


The 2 public meetings at Whitby Pavilion weren't advertised by the organisers with only Whitby Network  and the protest group giving the events publicity.


When I viewed the Executive Committee making its unanimous decision to go ahead with the proposal after what had been said and written out to be read out and the hundreds of pages of statements and questions that should have been read prior to attending and not one defence of any accusations or indeed warnings if not true , I realised your all in it together.

A letter read out was sent in by "A" Mr ###### (Former Headteacher) apparently.  He knows more about Secondary Education than everyone at the meeting  having been a Head Teacher at a very successful Eskdale School hor a number of years before experiencing the pitfalls of running a split site school in Northallerton prior to retiring. How many people sat at the meeting have ever been involved in Education and do they always appear to be disinterested when attending.


In summary, without a valid explanation as to why the proposal has to be what it is I will presume you all gave something you have to protect.


How can you justify closing a school that is running at a loss because of incompetent governors and councillors,many children moved away from Caedmon because of massive bullying issues not to mention drug abuse.


Why was Eskdale funds spent on the failing sixth form that offers nothing more than it did at the old whitby college when my children were there over 20 year ago,it will never be able to offer the course and hands on experience that children go out of town for.



Why close Eskdale instead of the sixth form which is nowhere near its capacity and therefore a complete and utter waste of money.

What about the massive amount of new builds on the east side,on the doorstep of Eskdale school which by the way are all family homes.


Corruption seems to be rife in this case and the parents and children are not being listened to,what will happen when parents start pulling children out of school left right and centre because they are being bullied and not taught properly.


Wake up and do whats right for the children of this town and put them first instead of money,these children are happy at Eskdale and chose that school for their own reasons,what about all the children going up from primary school to uncertainty ?


Are the primary schools the next target of cuts and coruption under these governors who seem to have their fingers in all these pies.


As a parent of a child at Eskdale school I would object to the closure of school until there is proven to be sufficient capacity to accomodate chidren at both schools without disruption to their education. I believe this has been poorly thought through with disregard to the consequences of our childrens' education. I believe there are some plans in place to allow co-operation between the two schools. This seems to be a short term cost saving measure without any long plan to improve the educational standards or quality of the aging infrastructure. I do not believe the timescale is realistic without significant disruption to my child's education. He has special educational and physical needs which is currenntly supported by staff at Eskdale and to propose radical changes at this point in his development and education will inevitably result in poorer performance and achievement socially and academically


I am in support of this strategic move to facilitate efficiencies and greater learning opportunities. My son is at Caedmon and I have always found them supportive and informative.


Hi I really think this is such a bad decision to combine two schools together there's  high bullying in cademon especially and have seen what it does to children my daughter is going up to eskdale this year and I dont intend for her to go to cademon at all I think the teachers work load is going to be extremely busy and there's not enough teachers to teach especially when the classes are going to be too big education will fall and its not going to go down well I think u need to get rid of cademon college for a start if its money which it always is then why don't schools raise funds or get sponsors to keep two schools open I think the teachers have given up because of work load and pay which i understand but to combine 2 schools together is not good at all mental health for a start drugs getting into school bullying which then becomes a problem because there's no other choice if they wanted to leave cause it got that bad I think it should go bk to how it was when I was a kid the catchment area u went to cademon school and if u were in another catchment u went to eskdale then all met at whitby Community college its truly ridiculous all this u must find another solution because u arnt looking at the bigger picture and the effects that this will have on children whitby getting bigger with more houses we need more secondary schools to be available not losing them I think u need to go back to the drawing board and stop putting money first should be our children.


Good Morning


The proposal to close the best secondary school in Whitby where children are genuinely cared for both holistically and educationally is an absolute disgrace and a cause for serious concern .


To take away a valuable educational resource from  the children of Whitby and surrounding areas shows a complete lack of care for the young people in this area .


Already lacking in educational resources and facilities you choose to destroy the lives of eskdale school children further by closing their school.


I feel strongly about this issue and hope for the future of Whitby and surrounding areas that the school will remain open . Eskdale school grows intelligent ,independent , kind young people . We need more not less of these kind of people in the world .


Regarding the proposal to house 1000 children on Caedmon College Normanby site instead of the current 600 I wish to comment on the transport situation.

There is still no transport assessment. The statement (presumably from Whitby Secondary Partnership) is seemingly not carried out by qualified transport assessors neither does it consider all aspects of the transport impact (because residents live around that area, and their residential area does actually matter to them).


1. With the current 600 pupils Mayfield Road is gridlocked around 8:45 and 3:30, with buses parking in the carriageway, as well as large numbers of vehicles parking to drop off/pick up their children. This parking is on ALL surrounding streets. Multiplying the amount of traffic by 5/3, which is what you are proposing, means that surrounding streets will be further inundated during those hours, as well as a general deterioration of the traffic situation on the (already) busiest road in the town. The vehicular entrance to Caedmon College Normanby needs a redesign so that buses do not cause a blockage.


2. Your proposal implies 400 children having to walk (when not being driven by parents) down (the racetrack) Helredale Rd, followed by crossing Whitby New Bridge (40mph, with footpaths that have no verge nor do they have width), followed by arrival at Mayfield Road. They will then need to cross that road. This raises the following

2.1 An NYCC Scrutiny Committee voted in Jan/Feb to require 20mph OUTSIDE ALL SCHOOLS AND AREAS OF HIGH FOOTFALL. Whitby Sixth Form is on New Bridge, yet has 40mph currently. Consequential to this vote and your proposal, the whole of New Bridge, and a section of Mayfield Road will need to be dropped to 20mph.

2.2 Crossing facilities on Mayfield Road (full length) are utterly inadequate currently, and with a further 400 pupils around 8:45 and 3:30 will be totally unacceptable. Specifically there is a single light-controlled crossing on the length of Mayfield Road ... at the junction with Prospect Hill and New Bridge, and this crossing takes 3 minutes for the lights to change for pedestrians. Consequently it can be considered that crossing facilities will need a complete redesign, 2.3 The junction between Mayfield Road with Prospect Hill and New Bridge is the biggest bottleneck in the road system in Whitby currently, and this will get worse by directing further traffic due to this proposal, so the junction really also needs to be considered for a redesign whilst considered the crossings.

2.4 The junction between Spital Bridge / Larpool Lane and New Bridge is already listed as a problematic junction for NYC (allegedly due to be worked on / redesigned for "Town Deal" due to the chaos caused by closure of the Swing Bridge). This redesign will have to take into account the passage of a further 400 children on school days.

2.5 Inclusion of cycling in the School Travel Plan has to be considered, and clearly is impossible currently due to NYC's sum total investment in Active Travel in the Whitby area of £0 to date. The LCWIP for this area is due to be developed this financial year. This has to include provision of cycle infra across New Bridge. This is yet a further reason for the bridge limit to be dropped to 20mph. Similarly the LCWIP will have implications for any redesign of the Mayfield Road area (e.g a cycle path along that road, and use of the disused bridge off Anchorage Way), and has to be borne in mind (otherwise you would only have to rework it later, at further cost to the taxpayer).


Until a full transport assessment has been carried out that considers all of these issues, and the associated cost calculated, we fail to see how any such proposal can go ahead; all associated costs should be included in the decision process (aka how "business" would make such a decision).


As someone who worked in the Whitby Secondary School system for 18 years I am well placed to be able to comment on the deplorable behaviour of School Leaders, Governing Bodies and NYCC. In fact, having been subject to bullying by a former head teacher and his Governing Body at Whitby Community College in 2010, I am very well placed to comment on the current proposal to amalgamate Whitby’s Secondary Schools. I am not going to waste time picking up on specifics as I know many people will already have done so, and it would be far too long!

NYCC’s handling of Secondary Education in Whitby over the last 20 years is nothing short of disgraceful. Year after year they have taken a sticking plaster approach to any problems, wasting hundreds of thousands of taxpayer’s money along the way. And all because they lacked the vision to make sure that the people of Whitby had a Secondary Education system they could all be proud of.

The recent ‘Consultation’ process to amalgamate schools was a complete farce, full of smoke and mirrors. People at the top have continued to lie and withhold relevant information. It would appear that aspects of the process may not even be legal. I attended both the meetings held in Whitby Spa and found the presentations by Caedmon College staff to be embarrassing, while NYCC representatives said nothing. In fact, the senior official didn’t even have the professional courtesy to introduce himself and thank people for attending. As a former teacher I can tell you there is nothing worse than someone putting slides on a screen and then reading them to an audience.

Thinking nothing could be worse I then watched the streamed meeting of the Executive where the decision to amalgamate was taken. That was even more embarrassing. Elected members were asked to vote on a very important matter having been fed a few very selected pieces of information. There was absolutely no mention of the behaviour of Senior School Leaders, Governors and NYCC. These people are not qualified to make decisions about the education of our young people and now that they have taken such a ridiculous decision their hands are as dirty as the rest of the group. NYCC should be ashamed of what they have done to the population of Whitby. It will not be forgotten by the town and the damage done will be immense.

From day one I told people that this was a done deal and so it appears to be. I await the Academisation of Whitby’s Secondary School and the departure of ##### (Current Executive Headteacher) as he moves onto his next financially lucrative project.


I am opposed the amalgamation of the schools in the respect of the site chosen, if this goes ahead my child will have to cross 5 or more busy roads to get to school. The school already has a space/parking issue and not much green space for children to enjoy. The current curriculums in some subjects are not matching and since my child will be picking his GCSEs he will have done one year in his chosen field then what is the guarantee he can complete the second year with continuity? He is already at a disadvantage having learning disabilities compounded with the change is just setting them up for a greater fall. I do not disagree that improvements are needed within the current educational status but putting our future children to the slaughter of an inadequate facility is incomprehensible. All children should be given the opportunity to shine and not at the expense of others.

A forward thinking approach to funding and developing a larger site to incorporate all would not only alleviate worries from parents from both schools but invest in our children’s future not a hasty one to save cash now.

Thank you for the opportunity and I hope you raise and consider my concerns.


Please see below the formal objection of Whitby Town Council (as resolved at its meeting on 2 May 2023) to the statutory proposals: Part 1 – Eskdale School – Discontinuance; and Part 2 – Caedmon College Whitby – Increase in the published admission number.

I am writing to express Whitby Town Council’s objection to the proposals to amalgamate Caedmon College Whitby and Eskdale School, resulting in the technical closure of Eskdale School and the Eskdale site. It is the council’s understanding that the consultation process has been inadequate, and the views of parents and the community have neither been properly considered nor listened to.

Whitby Town Council strongly believes that any decision regarding the future of our local schools should be made with the input of all stakeholders, including parents, teachers, and local residents. Unfortunately, it appears that the consultation process was not sufficiently robust or inclusive and the decision making process of the Local Education Authority was cursory and largely dismissive of the many legitimate objections raised by the community.

There has been very little information provided to parents about the proposed amalgamation, and many have expressed the view that they have not had the opportunity to fully understand the implications of this decision. Furthermore, it seems that the concerns and objections have been largely ignored by those in charge of the consultation process. This is evidenced by the failure of the governing body to accept an invitation to address the town council and the lack of engagement experienced at the two public sessions conducted at Whitby Pavilion on 8 March 2023 – which was the only public consultation event undertaken by the LEA or the Whitby Secondary Partnership.

The town council is aware of legitimate concerns articulated by parents and others over the process that has been followed by the governing body in making its initial request to the local education authority to undertake this amalgamation.  The town council believes that a fuller explanation is required of the process followed, whether decisions by the governing body in this regard are properly constituted, whether full and meaningful figures have been disclosed to justify the decision to close the Eskdale site over any other within the Federation based on pupil numbers, utilisation of existing capacity, the extent of remedial works required under the proposals versus a ‘do nothing’ baseline, the capital value of any land declared surplus and the utilisation of any asset arising from the technical closure of the Eskdale site.  The published figures do not show a full analysis of options other than the one proposed, which does not enable a full and proper comparison of the available options to be made.

Statutory guidance states, “Although there is no longer a statutory ‘pre-publication’ consultation period for prescribed alteration changes, there is a strong expectation that governing bodies and local authorities will consult interested parties in developing their proposal prior to publication, to take into account all relevant considerations…” (Making significant changes (‘prescribed alterations’) to maintained schools Statutory guidance for proposers and decision makers - January 2023)

This has not occurred.

The town council urges you to reconsider the proposed amalgamation of these two schools, or to request the withdrawal of the proposal by the governing body, and to engage in a more meaningful and transparent consultation process with the local community. It is important that any decision regarding the future of our schools is made in a way that is transparent, accountable, and addresses the views and needs of all stakeholders.  Whitby Town Council calls on North Yorkshire County Council (and henceforth North Yorkshire Council) as local education authority to conduct a full, systemic and independent review of education provision in Whitby, within the catchment of the existing secondary schools, to include nursery, pre-school, early years, infant, primary, secondary and further education facilities and opportunities to ensure that the current and future needs of the Whitby area are properly understood and provided for.  Such a consultation should enable all relevant considerations to be reviewed before any specific proposal is made.

There should have been greater efforts to engage with the community and to respond to legitimate questions arising from the consultation.

The Governing Body of the Schools’ Federation has ignored repeated requests to attend a meeting of the town council, which is the proper way in which the town council should be engaged as a core consultee in this process.

Until such time as the Governing Body is prepared to meet with the town council, Whitby Town Council will not recognise the legitimacy of this process and will maintain that position publicly.


Attached - Plan of possible solutions.

Dear B Khan (Assistant and Chief Executive)

The closure of Eskdale School, and the increase of pupils therefore at Caedmon College makes financial sense.

However the increase in numbers brings our current safety concerns to critical.

As a college neighbour [##, Prospect Hill] since Nov 1999 we have already voiced, on many occasions to Mrs ####, and previous administrations our concerns.

In 2000 I took over and organised the purchase of land for our private parking from NYCC [###### Prospect Hill].

Parents do not follow instructions and dismiss the guidance ‘not to enter the college car park’ when dropping off & collecting pupils during the school day.

Our houses were built in the late 1800’s, our ‘ten foot’ accesses are regularly blocked by parents, and our private parking spaces also filled [even by a coach].

The college was founded in 1912, and the single lane access sufficed for that period but fails all modern H&Safety, and the college’s traffic policy plans for the future.

Access to the college is via a very tight, poor visibility T-Junction, leading to a small car park, the access to the main buildings is via a single carriage way with new electric gates.

On occasions, the car park has been full of taxi’s, private hire, and parents, with an additional 5 cars filling up the void between the parked cars [it had to be seen to believe].

The access lane also full of parents on the Single Yellow line.

As I wrote to Mrs ###### [Business Manager], if any emergency vehicles had needed access it would have been absolutely impossible.

Over the years I have witnessed two head-on crashes in the lane between 23 & 24 Prospect Hill.

There have been numerous crashes on the junction itself - including a teacher who ‘T-Boned’ a motorcyclist as she left the college on a Sunday!!!

The lane is already dangerous, the car park is a cul-de-sac - a dead-end, once parents have committed there is nowhere for them to go.

Over the years I have given a lot of thought as to how the college can improve its required access needs.

There are two options for you which I suggest you consider.

Plan 1 - The Cinder track from Southend Gardens [narrow bridge demolished] to 27, Prospect Hill, A171 is completely filled in, and graded accordingly.

Creating both a new college drive [parallel to the existing one] and a massive much needed carpark.

Easy access and exit for all the college’s needs.

Entry would be next to 27, Prospect Hill, and exit via Southend Gardens - One-Way.

Plan 2 - A new dedicated two-way college drive - entry via 3, Mayfield Road, Cul-de-Sac [near the college’s weather station].

Once onto the college grounds the road would turn left, [parallel to Rosemount Rd.] running past the weather station, directly to the tennis courts.

Turn right at the tennis courts with a gentle gradient into the college staff car park.

The beauty of this proposal is the excellent visibility for both safe entry and exit onto and off Mayfield Road, and adjoining roads for easy dissipation of cars.

This would also aide the college when they rent out the grounds to campers & caravans, and not have to dismantle the palisade fence behind my property for emergency egress/access.

It is imperative that future access to the college does away with the current access from the A171 before we have a serious incident.

Or you could buy all the neighbours adjoining properties from 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26 & 27 Prospect Hill, and demolish them all to satisfy all your access and parking needs.


Good Evening,


It appears that mine and many others concerns and objections to the above proposal have thus far been ignored. I am therefore submitting my original comments from the  consultation portal in the hope that they will be considered and taken into account as I was led to believe should have been a fundamental part of the public consultation.


The reasons for the proposal are stated as:

1) Low pupil numbers - the largest decline in numbers is in the sixth form and it is widely documented that it this element of the Whitby town education provision that is failing on all parts and has been for several years. What our children need is a high quality well led secondary education. This should be delivered by offering them choice and a safe environment to study and develop. Neither of my children have or will access further education in Whitby as it simply does not offer the courses, facilities or opportunities that they require, and deserve. As parents we fully support them in this choice both financially and emotionally. Both our children had flourished at Eskdale school and have fulfilled and exceeded expectations within the nurturing environment and through the dedication and hard work of the teaching staff and leadership team.

2) Significant financial challenges at both schools - there is solid evidence to show that these financial challenges are firmly seated in the drain on finances of the sixth form college. I am furious to find out of the financial cost that Eskdale School had had to bear to keep the sixth form and also the ludicrous salaries of the senior management team of the Whitby Secondary Partnership.

3) An imperative to give the best education and curriculum to the young people of Whitby - This is almost laughable, the very fact that the proposal was first set to take place in September 2023 shows that the people proposing this change have no regard for the young people of Whitby's education, health and wellbeing (Also maybe they should remember that a large proportion of young people do not live in Whitby i.e. residents of the Esk Valley, traditionally the main catchment area for Eskdale School) and clearly they are many other agendas on the table here.


For there to be such strong evidence against all three reasons stated for the proposal alone should be reason to reject this proposal but when you also take into account the lack of a proper evaluation of alternative solutions, lack of change management planning and several areas of concern with regards to correct procedures being followed and a lack of transparency from the proposers and governing bodies; then I really can't see how this proposal can be supported.

If this proposal was allowed to go ahead with the revised timescale my youngest child will have completed their secondary education at Eskdale - no doubt under a black cloud forced upon him by the very people who should have been ensuring that he met his full potential and had an enjoyable secondary educational experience. My niece is due to start secondary school in September 2023 and I have many concerns for her safety, health and wellbeing if she was to be 'educated' in the proposed amalgamated, split site school. My parents attended Eskdale School, as did myself and my sister and now currently the third generation of our family - Eskdale a place of belonging, we made our choice, hear our voice!



I trust these views will be considered along with those of others that have been submitted from the start of the consultation period.


I am writing to add my voice to the many that do not agree with proposal. As someone who has worked in education for a great many years, I am extremely disappointed with how this proposal has been handled.  As a staff member I feel personally we have been cut adrift already with no ideas of what the plan is should this proposal to ahead. When people in our community ask what is likely to happen we have no answers. Utterly embarrassing. It leads me and others to believe that this proposal was made without any actual plan or thought on what it would all look like.

As a very proud member of staff at Eskdale school I’ve witnessed what can be achieved within a small school. It is quite remarkable and just a pity that the situation is simply being looked at as bricks and mortar. We are much more than that!

I simply find it disturbing that four people could take  such a  monumental decision without first putting other options on the table for us all to see and understand.

I am truly hoping that at this next stage this proposal will be suspended. I watched the meeting to discuss the proposal that was held at county hall with disbelief as the Cllr’s there didn’t appear to raise any of the concerns that had either been put to them or picked  up points raised via letter or email about people’s concerns .

Even more so when letters were read out to the committee although thanks were given, praise was saved for the governor who spoke. Actually, my children have attended both schools in the past as have a great many others.

We know books have to be balanced but actually the last couple of years combined with covid have played their part but they are not the norm.

Eskdale’s site would be perfect to expand and make a more modern school. It has what the main Caedmon site does not have and that is space!

Why not for example look at the idea of incorporating the new fishing school onto the site, it come with a 10 million pound pot of money.

Please look at this again, people have so many concerns about this proposal going ahead. As the New North Yorkshire Council, I expected more than the same old speal, let’s close Eskdale. How about instead saying let’s  think how we can help this great little school go on to even great things along with Caedmon, who both have their own individuality and strengths. Unfortunately I believe our sixth form will never be more than it already is which is a good provision but needs to be moved back onto the main Caedmon site.

Please take our concerns seriously,

Kind regards


I wish to make a comment regarding safeguarding in respect of the amalgamation of Caedmon College and Eskdale School, particularly as I am a safeguarding trainer and constantly drum into those attending the training sessions  that safeguarding is everyone's responsibility.


I live at ### Prospect Hill, Whitby which is situated on the A171 road close to the short public street that allows access to the school's staff car park, visitors' cars and foot passengers including pupils.  The rear of my house overlooks the school field and I have access to 'short public street' via  from the rear in common with neighbouring houses.


Having been a nominated safeguarding governor at a school elsewhere for 13 years before moving to Whitby in 2018, I find it ironic that the pupils are protected within the school grounds by a high fence but put at risk immediately beyond the school's curtilage by exposure to parent's cars dropping off or picking up pupils and executing U turns in the street to avoid trespassing on the car park.  I avoid using my car at school at such times; however, I often have occasion to be in the area and witness the scene of pupils weaving between moving vehicles to cross the street.


Whilst I have not witnessed any accidents, I do not consider it is something the school should be complacent about.  I understand that the College have appealed to parents to be more thoughtful, but you don't need to be an anthropologist to know that trying to change a parent's behaviour is like herding cats - particularly when it is raining.  I may have brokered a transport policy with parents and residents at the school which I served, but it was hard work keeping it effective.


My purpose in writing is to be helpful and driven by my concern that the amalgamation will not only increase the number of pupils using the street to access the college, but also the number of parents' cars, particularly given that pupils from the east side of Whitby would have further to walk to school, thus increasing the risks to pupils.


I would suggest that in preparation for amalgamation the college should take a child centred approach to the matter and manage out the risk.


The most obvious solution is to separate the pupils and traffic within the current danger zone.  I understand there are other, currently unused, entrances to the school, and which do not open onto a main road within a matter of yards.  Perhaps the use of one or both of those could be explored.  Or, the college could accept parental behaviour will not change and provide a safe turning area for them at one of the unused entrances away from the A171.




I am appalled that one of the first decisions the new NYC is making is the closure of a senior school in Whitby without the following points below being considered first. This decision will change the education provision in Whitby and District forever and the proposal must not be allowed to progress.

 Education in coastal regions is already known to below Regional and National standards and North Yorkshire Council appear determined to continue this decline by operating a non-sustainable split-site school. This decision lacks vision and  will not assist in improving the economy and the future of this area, nor the long term future of North Yorkshire.

·           Clarification if the original decision taken by only four Governors is legal and ethical

·           A comprehensive review of all Whitby & District’s educational and skills training needs for both senior pupils and adults is required before any closures are carried out

·           Long term this proposal does not offer the best educational  or financial resources for our students, it does not appear to consider the health and welfare of pupils and neither will it encourage new pupils to the school. Also what guarantees will be given that the sixth form will continue, as operating this on a separate site does not appear to make financial sense

·           The Whitby & District catchment area, one of the larger North Yorkshire districts requires fair funding for 11 to 19 year old’s and adults, in suitable facilities to comply with the NY Climate strategy

·           There should also be a  guarantee in this or any future proposal that the proceeds from any sale of buildings and/or land, finances facilities for learning in the future in the Whitby & District catchment area.




Re: Proposal to amalgamate Caedmon College and Eskdale School from 1 September 2024 resulting in the closure of Eskdale School, Whitby.      

# Submission Online 27/03/23   

Low pupil numbers - the decline has been known for some time, why have NYCC officers/Councillors and school governors not proposed a long term plan for education in Whitby before now? They appear to have only considered Scarborough catchment area and totally ignored Whitby catchment area. This problem is also linked to the lack of social and “truly affordable” housing in Whitby, again Councils have failed to take action.

 Significant financial challenges at both schools - this is not true, the financial aspect should have looked at the costs of the three separate sites, the sixth form is the most expensive to run, and will continue to be so. This proposal does not take into account all the other issues affecting the schools and the community, including transport and highway issues, lack of green spaces, playing fields and biodiversity, active travel and well being of the pupils.

 Imperative to give the best education and curriculum to the young people of Whitby - the educational system in the Whitby Catchment area has been failing for some time, resulting in loss of most  sixth form, skills and adult training in the area. The level of bullying and drug taking highlighted at the Public meeting on 08/03/2023, and the appalling incident on 13th March appears to indicate a lack of Management control at the schools. The standard of education, skills training and welfare of the pupils has been below North Yorkshire and National levels for some time, and no plan of action appears to have been considered. The failure of the Governors to set up an adequate Governing Body following the formation of the The Whitby Secondary Partnership in 2019 and the very dubious decision taken by only four Governors to submit this proposal to NYCC

Conclusion - An immediate and urgent review of education in the Whitby Catchment area is required, with a 10 year plan proposed following consultation between all relevant parties including parents and the community before any further decisions are taken.

The Eskdale (11-16) and Caedmon-Scoresby sites(11- 16 or 19) should remain open, with a long term plan for a purpose built school on the Caedmon site.

The Caedmon - Normanby site should be transferred to a Skills and adult education site including the sixth form, funded by the Town Deal Maritime Academy Deal, or possibly a new building on the Caedmon-Scoresby site. An alternative use for this site could be a Community led older person’s village



Statutory proposals Part 1 – Eskdale School – Discontinuance

We are very pleased to hear NYC have recently agreed to appoint an independent investigator to answer a complaint by Terri-anne Jones (parent) about the way in which the WSP Amalgamation of Schools/Eskdale closure was handled, however we would query the independence of the investigator who is a Chair of Governors for a school based in North Yorkshire.


Whitby Community Network has still not received any responses to previous questions or statements made:

1.         Emailed 16/01/2023 to Co-Chair of Governors - response from (Executive Headteacher Email Address) “advised to engage as part of that (consultation) process”

2.         Emailed letter 16/01/23 to Cllr Wilkinson, response received but only to comment “not be appropriate for me to attend WCN meeting or comment, advised to take part in consultation if instigated”.

3.         Emailed B. Khan, Assistant Chief Executive - legal and democratic services   23/01/23, with copy of email  to Cllr.Wilkinson 16/01/2023  - no response received

4.         Emailed 24/03 to Councillor Wilkinson following public meetings at Whitby Pavilion

5.         Consultation response submitted 27/03/23

6.         Whitby Community Network Statement to NYC Exec. Meeting, Tuesday, 18th April, 2023 - no response received


The local community still cannot understand how the decision reached by the Governors supports their statement that it is “Imperative to give the best education and curriculum to the young people of Whitby". The 11-16 year old pupils will be located at the oldest school, with the least playing fields/green space available, requiring access to a second site across the busiest road in Whitby. This site also does not have sufficient parking or turning space for cars and coaches. Evidence from other schools in the area has already demonstrated staff and pupils working across split sites does not work, and is not sustainable.


The sustainability of the sixth form site has also been queried as no plan is available to demonstrate how this site will be expanded and where funding will be made  available from. There are also no guarantees in the proposal about putting the proceeds from any sale of educational buildings and land towards facilities for education and skills training in the future in the Whitby & District area.


This decision, if progressed, lacks clarity and vision and will change the education provision in Whitby & District forever, so it is absolutely imperative the way forward is chosen based on the best education and curriculum for the young people of Whitby & District.


We all understand the financial implications of operating three school sites, but at a saving of £85K  (governor’s statement), out of a budget of millions, have all other options truly been investigated. We would therefore again like to request a stop to the present proposal, and that an immediate, full and transparent review of the future of education in the Whitby catchment area is progressed with parents, students and community representatives. If this is not forthcoming, Whitby Community Network will consider the option of moving forward in seeking an application for a Judicial Review.

We would yet again ask  North Yorkshire Council for the following points to be taken into consideration when making a decision:

1.         Where is the Council/governors’ long term plan for education and skills training in the Whitby catchment area, including the possibility of academisation of the schools?

2.         Was the Governor’s original decision legal with a detailed evidence trail to back up the proposal taken? The figures should have been clearly presented for all three sites to determine which site should close, but with a view to the long term needs for the education,  and the safety and welfare of our children in this area. The forecasts did not consider the additional costs and inconvenience of running split-site schools, and the costs of employing more skilled teachers for the sixth form. Future recruitment is likely to be extremely  challenging due to the lack of vision and instability of the present situation and the cost of buying or renting properties in Whitby.

3.         Does this decision in fact provide evidence to meet the three issues highlighted as to the reason for calling for the amalgamation/closure: “Low pupil numbers”,  “Significant financial challenges at both schools”, and “ Imperative to give the best education and curriculum to the young people of Whitby,” or will it in fact lead to a further decline in pupil numbers and education standards.

4.         When will the Whitby & District catchment area receive fair funding for 11 to 19 year old’s, to ensure education and skills training is available in buildings that are energy and design efficient, and that can be multi-purposed to enable adult skills training to be carried out locally rather than just being considered part of the Scarborough Area. Has the York & North Yorkshire’s Route Map to Carbon Negative which includes fifteen minutes neighbourhoods, distance to learn, reduction in car usage etc been considered?

We hope you will fully discuss and consider these issues before any decisions are reached,  and we look forward to hearing from you.

Yours sincerely


Please accept this email as a formal objection towards the merger of Caedmon school and Eskdale School in Whitby, North Yorkshire. Caedmon school already has enough students without adding more from Eskdale. There has been no mention at all of where these extra students would be housed within Caedmon, how staffing will cope with the extra students or the impact this will have on current students. I hear Travelodge is looking for new premises around Whitby, and that they have been lobbying councils in North Yorkshire - is this why Eskdale is being shut? To make way for a new Travelodge?!


Response to the statutory notices issued for the Amalgamation of Eskdale school and Caedmon College Whitby.


A number of issues have a risen in regards to the situation as a whole and it is believed by the community that the following questions / situations  need answering before any formal decision can be made.


  1. Governors and NYC have blamed the two bank holidays in May for the delay in releasing information, yet the stake holders have not recieved any extra time in light of these.


  1. Why the Governors and NYC Councillors and officers have refused to engage with stakeholders, they will only engage between the two parties.


  1. A number of complaints are in with regards to the information given one being an ICO complaint with information for the North Yorkshire Coast  Oppotunity Area, and Mr Caltons involvement with the Governors of Whitby Secondary Partnership. - was public money used correctly?


  1. A complaint to the school has been escalated to Stage two, this was deliberately delayed at stage one as the independent person was only appointed the day after the 20 days were over.


  1. Has there been an impact report for the £614,000 Whitby 6th form has already recieved, was this value for money, has it impacted education and attendence figures?


  1. The contribution from Eskdale to the 6th form - the federation costs (shared costs) are split 63/ 37 - ##### (Co-Chair of Governors) told the independent investigator of a complaint that there wasn't a contribution but a figure that matched the £30,000 exactly was for shared costs?


  1. Since September 2022- there has only been one option explored - closing Eskdale School this is not and never has been a true consultation.


  1. Why 6 members of the Executive Committee did not declare previous decisions made could impact their impartially on this topic. / And a Councillor who was a visiting woodwind teacher not making this clear when stating she taught in all 3 schools.

Cllr Les, Cllr Sanderson, Cllr White, Cllr Dadd, Cll Harrison, Cllr Chance all agreed £500,000 of capital investment into Whitby 6th Form - under the guidance of Stuart Carlton in 2020


  1. A request for a curriculum and staffing model has been ignored
  3. That again the Governors have lied to the independent investigator- as a parent governor has not been elected, and they have refused applications - the stricted process (Mr ####s words) have not been followed as can be seen in the minutes.


  1. An independent review has been refused - if there is nothing to hide why?


  1. Is the federation legal - internal review in process (20th June) - Dfe no documents, NYC - no documents.


We as stake holders have been left no choice but to seek a Judicial review



Do the Council executive know 


That the Split site funding Caedmon Currently recieves stops ... but their budget doesn't decrease NYC have to make up the difference??? 


Is that why the rush to get an academy on side? 


Do the executive have the Full picture of Whitby Education.... at least one Primary school is not viable after next year. 



Where is the Curriculum model? The staff model?


They can't care for the SEND children now in Caedmon even with a TMP hub, children are being failed, why is this about money and mismanagement, not the kids and education


For the avoidance of doubt any consultation records should record that ## objects to any decision being taken to close the current Eskdale School site or to amalgamate the current secondary school provision on the basis that the decision does not appear to have been made lawfully.


Please find attached the Foi for where the money from NYCC and NYCOA.


There are discrepancies as all £500,000 of capital Mr ##### (WSP Executive Headteacher) states was spent on  the 6th form site... even thought in the official NYCC documents some was meant to go to the Normanby site for the food tech rooms. 


If the truth can't be told about what money they have had and where it has gone, how can we have faith in the proposal. 


What impact has this money had??? 





How the money given to Caedmon College / whitby 6th form my NYCC and NYCOA was spent. Broken down into individual areas ie classroom development, staff. Which site it was spent on, Normanby or Scoresby And which area was paid for by which fund

NYCC £250,000

NYCOA - capital £250,000

NYCOA -revenue support. £114,272 (Mr Caltons number)


NYCC - £250,000.00 and NYCOA Capital - £250,000.00

IT - £26,731.88

Design,Consultancy, Project Management - £41,580.28

Furniture and Fittings - £57,262.96

Construction/Works - £374,424.88

All of the work completed under the spending was carried out on the Scoresby Site as part of the refurbishment of the site to accommodate post 16 students.


NYCOA £114,272

Governance & Leadership Development & Training including Leadership Recruitment - £67,846.00

Curriculum Intent Consultancy - £13,350.00

Post 16 Scoping Project - £12,000.00

Thinking Reading Project - £9,500.00

Teachers Recruitment and Retention Packages - £11,576.00



I have written several emails to councillors to find my email blocked?


How is this fai

No questions answered!!

No transparency!!

No legal quorate. Three votes not four as two of them are co chair so should only have one vote. Two have a vested interest

Dangerous site at Caedmon

No consideration of children safety and mental health issues

No forward planning or they would or should have told us 

Pleas reconsider?



I write to you in the eleventh hour  to ask that you and the committee re look at the decision made in April this year and infact halt that decision. Watching via video link of that meeting I was astonished that dispite Hundreds of comments against the proposal, none sitting at the table raised any of those concerns which leads me to believe it’s a done deal.

Also can I point out that Helredale playing field and larpool playing field were both granted planning permission, one for houses the other for cemetery extension which was because of the facility at Eskdale. That means  that the East side of Whitby will be well under the limit that government expects.

Please reconsider, far cheaper to keep Eskdale open the to extend Caedmon college.