Saturday, July 22, 2006



Couldn't help but notice "School's homes scheme to fund revamp" (Page 5, July 19) - and to tie that in with Crawley Observer's Front Page ("A bum rap", July 19) - both featuring Bernard Smith, Headteacher of St Wilfred's Catholic School, but on two completely different issues. In the News, dear Bernard is trying to defend the indefensible about building on his playing fields. I know a little about the selling-off of school playing fields, as some of you might know.

I find it staggering that a headteacher is wheeled in front of the media to pronounce his opinion about what is essentially a property deal - he should stick to his job as a headteacher and let his Education Authority do this sort of dirty work.

The trouble is I'm not sure if this Roman Catholic School comes under the authority of West Sussex County Council - and that complicates the issue. What I do know is that a certain Catholic School (St Rood's?) was knocked down, years ago so that a new housing development could be built (you can see the result to the left of Overdene Drive petrol station at the back of what was Ifield First (re-located) & Ifield Middle School-now The Mill Primary School).

I understand this Catholic school was linked to the Ifield Grammar/Sarah Robinson/Special School Campus in some way. Now look at the area - thanks to WSCC's Crawley Schools PFI Project. Spot the school playing fields...

How much is that PFI scam costing us, the council taxpayer, by the way? I have yet to receive an answer from West Sussex County Council - who are supposed to be responsible for education and schools in Crawley... I feel myself getting angry now, so I will say no more....except to say : Where has the school playing field gone for Ifield First School - now called The Mill Primary ?

The playing field for the Mill Primary is in exactly the same place as the Ifield Middle school field was, and had been since the school opened in 1985, adjacent to the old Holy Trinity school.
Interesting - then why has the Mill Primary been having their sports days in the playground ?
Ask them!
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