After Lerryn Church of England Primary School, near Lostwithiel in Cornwall, was told that lack of funding would mean they had to scale down to only one class this year, residents of this tiny village raised more than £30,000 to hire a second teacher and keep their school open. They raised enough money to hire Miss Banner, who has just finished her teacher training, for one year, and are now starting again to pay her salary for next year. The school has 17 pupils but is holding open days to drive up numbers. Katrine Musgrave, who is chair of the Lerryn School Association, said: “We felt it would be a self-fulfilling prophecy, with fewer parents choosing the school if we had only one teacher.” The government allocates school funding on a per-pupil basis, and since the end of 2019, more than 70 small primaries have closed.

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