Berkshire

Private school in Reading to shut as campaign fails

A bid to save an independent school in Berkshire from closure has failed.

Parents mounted a campaign in February to save the Highlands School in Reading after it emerged it had been running at a loss "for an extended period".

Some families offered to pay higher fees but the board of governors said the efforts had not been enough to offer future financial security.

The school will shut at the end of term in July, with parents offered help to find alternative places for children.

In a statement the governors said: "It is with enormous regret that [we] have to announce that despite tremendous efforts and support from the parents, staff, governors and our bankers, we have been unable to achieve the financial certainty necessary to ensure the long term future of the Highlands School.

"We are grateful for the continued professionalism and dedication of the staff in ensuring that your children continue to receive the high level of education and pastoral care that they are accustomed to during this challenging time.

"The governors and senior management team will endeavour to provide whatever support is needed to help staff, pupils and parents through this difficult period."

The independent school was founded in 1929 and can cater for about 160 pupils - girls aged two to 11 and boys aged two to seven.

Boys over the age of seven are offered the chance to move to the Highlands' partner school St Edwards, which will remain open.

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