Enough school places in Surrey for all Ukrainian children

There will be enough spaces in Surrey schools to accommodate the several hundred Ukrainian refugee children expected, the county council has said.

Even if schools are at capacity, children who fled the conflict will be given spaces, officials say.
“Headteachers have welcomed this and are working closely with us,” a Surrey County Council spokesperson said.

The council is expecting more than 1,100 children through the Homes for Ukraine scheme.

The council spokesperson said: “Where there are no vacancies, we can place children into school where necessary.
“We are utilising fair access processes weekly in order to identify placements for children from Ukraine and other eligible children requiring a school place.”

As of 19 May, 377 school-aged children had arrived in the county and, of these, 160 (42%) had been offered places in schools, with the rest either waiting for an offer or in the process of applying, according to the BBC’s Local Democracy Reporting Service.

The number in school is growing on a daily basis and by 6 June the county council said it had risen to 361 out of 519 arrivals (70%).

More are arriving under a visa scheme because they have family in the UK.

The county council spokesperson added: “We have anticipated the challenge of ensuring there will be sufficient places available in Surrey for the Ukrainian children and young people arriving.”

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