Lewisham Opportunity Pre-School faces mid-year closure after lack of funding

News Shopper: Parents, staff and children at Lewisham Opportunity Pre-School which faces mid-year closure Parents, staff and children at Lewisham Opportunity Pre-School which faces mid-year closure

A PRE-SCHOOL for disabled and able-bodied children faces mid-year closure after a lack of funding.

Parents and staff have vowed to save Lewisham Opportunity Pre-School (LOPS) which needs £15,000 to stay open beyond March next year, although Lewisham Council have secured funding until March 2014.

The nursery, which was rated “outstanding” in its latest Ofsted report, is the only one in the borough offering an inclusive environment for children with and without special needs.

If closed, the pre-school — based in a temporary building behind Ladywell Leisure Centre — would leave 25 two to five-year-olds out of school before the end of the year.

Parent Barry Keevins, who lives in Rushey Green, has a three-year-old son Archie, who started at the school in September.

The 40-year-old said: “Archie loves it.

“The best thing for all the kids is the really high pupil teacher ratio.

“You don’t get this in the private sector.”

Parents are desperate to save the charity-funded school and are rallying community support and hosting fundraising events.

To cheer the kids up, LOPS supporter and former Dragons’ Den contestant Gary Hillman, from Hither Green, let them explore his fleet of novelty cars, which include the tiny Peel P50 vehicle seen in the latest Cadbury’s chocolate adverts.

Headteacher Christine Johns says the pre-school has been a victim of local authority cuts and is facing an uncertain future.

She added: “It would be a real shame if LOPS can’t survive until the end of the academic year, and to do so we need £15,000 or more if we are to survive in the long term.”

A Lewisham Council spokesman said: “In July 2011, we awarded Lewisham Opportunity Pre-School three-year grant funding, which is secure until March 2014.

“We have been advising it of ways to diversify its funding base and improve its long-term viability.”

A Twitter campaign against the looming closure is @SaveLOPS. People can donate by searching for Lewisham Opportunity Pre-School in the charities box at charitygiving.co.uk

Comments (3)

Please log in to enable comment sorting

2:14pm Fri 23 Nov 12

Margaret Smith says...

So a much needed special School is facing closure because Labour Lewisham cannot afford a £15.000 Grant. This cannot be the same Labour Council that has just awarded its new Cabinet member £15.000 a year. or the same Labour Council that spends £6 Million a year on Consultant fees?
The sooner we can elect Lewisham People Before Profit Councillors on to the Council the Better. Labour is no better than the Conservatives, Greed and self interest and to hell with the poor and thou s in need.
So a much needed special School is facing closure because Labour Lewisham cannot afford a £15.000 Grant. This cannot be the same Labour Council that has just awarded its new Cabinet member £15.000 a year. or the same Labour Council that spends £6 Million a year on Consultant fees? The sooner we can elect Lewisham People Before Profit Councillors on to the Council the Better. Labour is no better than the Conservatives, Greed and self interest and to hell with the poor and thou s in need. Margaret Smith

2:14pm Fri 23 Nov 12

Margaret Smith says...

So a much needed special School is facing closure because Labour Lewisham cannot afford a £15.000 Grant. This cannot be the same Labour Council that has just awarded its new Cabinet member £15.000 a year. or the same Labour Council that spends £6 Million a year on Consultant fees?
The sooner we can elect Lewisham People Before Profit Councillors on to the Council the Better. Labour is no better than the Conservatives, Greed and self interest and to hell with the poor and thou s in need.
So a much needed special School is facing closure because Labour Lewisham cannot afford a £15.000 Grant. This cannot be the same Labour Council that has just awarded its new Cabinet member £15.000 a year. or the same Labour Council that spends £6 Million a year on Consultant fees? The sooner we can elect Lewisham People Before Profit Councillors on to the Council the Better. Labour is no better than the Conservatives, Greed and self interest and to hell with the poor and thou s in need. Margaret Smith

5:21pm Sat 24 Nov 12

Lord Erastus Theobald Piggott says...

'Labour is no better than the Conservatives, Greed and self interest and to hell with the poor and thou s in need.'

How comes it's taken you so long to realise?
'Labour is no better than the Conservatives, Greed and self interest and to hell with the poor and thou s in need.' How comes it's taken you so long to realise? Lord Erastus Theobald Piggott

Comments are closed on this article.

click2find

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree