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Stanbridge Earls in Hampshire to close amid sex abuse allegations
A TROUBLED Hampshire school at the centre of sex abuse allegations is to close, the Daily Echo can reveal.
Stanbridge Earls near Romsey announced tonight that it will shut its doors after failing to get enough children to sign up for classes in September.
The school needed to get a minimum of 90 children on its roll for next term but only 82 signed up before its extended deadline passed at noon today.
A statement on the school's website says: “The trustees of Stanbridge Earls School announce with great sadness and deep regret that it will not be possible for the school to reopen for the autumn term, and therefore the school will be closing.
"Despite strong parental support for the school insufficient pledges had been received by midday today to make the School financially and educationally viable.”
As previously reported, a Special Educational Needs and Disability Tribunal earlier this year found that the £39,000-a-year school had discriminated against a girl and that staff members failed to tell the youngster's parents that she had complained of pain in an intimate part of her body.
The tribunal found that a vulnerable youngster had suffered “appalling abuse” at the hands of another student, while the school was slammed by panel members for being “unsystematic, unprofessional, ad hoc and completely inadequate” when it came to protecting the youngster, who cannot be named for legal reasons.
A police investigation called Operation Flamborough has already been set up to probe further allegations made by two former pupils.
This investigation includes an internal inquiry into whether police involved in previous investigations into sex abuse claims at the school should be disciplined.
The Chief Constable of Hampshire and Isle of Wight, Andy Marsh, is also facing a police probe from a separate force amid breach of confidentiality and contempt of court claims in connection with Stanbridge Earls.
The inquiry is being carried out on behalf of Hampshire’s Police Crime Commissioner Simon Hayes.
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