Plans to close or merge four primary schools in Hackney are set to be decided today.

The council’s cabinet will meet later this evening (December 11) after considering a report that recommends implementing the proposed changes.

Under current plans two schools – De Beauvoir Primary School and Randal Cremer Primary School – would close at the end of this school year.

In addition, Colvestone Primary School and Baden Powell Primary School would shut, with students being guaranteed a place at Princess May Primary School and Nightingale Primary School respectively from September 2024.

The size of Nightingale Primary School would also be increased by adding a further form of entry - a class to accomodate new pupils - to all year groups.

A council report recommending that the changes be implemented comes despite 95% of 175 responses during a recent statutory consultation period being against the proposals.

Hackney has said that the changes are necessary due to falling pupil rolls, with 21% of reception places left unfilled in the borough over the last school year.

The authority claims that because schools are financed based on the number of pupils they have, the significant decline in pupil numbers has caused some of them to face serious financial pressure.

Last year alone – the council says – the 58 primary schools in Hackney were missing more than £30 million in funding compared to if classrooms were full.

Deputy Mayor, Cllr Anntoinette Bramble said: “I would like to thank everyone who has worked with us during this process, as well as those who attended meetings to ask questions, submitted responses to the consultation, and advocated on behalf of their schools, their children and their wider communities.

“We know this has been a difficult and at times emotional process, and we are committed to continuing to engage with all communities and stakeholders to deliver on our ambitious vision for Hackney’s schools.

“No one goes into public life, or a leadership position, to close or merge schools, but it is our responsibility as a local authority to make the difficult decisions that enable us to continue to offer access to first-class education for every single child, allowing them to fulfil their potential and achieve their ambitions.”