It's official - a small school has 70 or fewer pupils. At least that is the definition used to calculate grant support to local authorities, the Education Minister stated in a parliamentary answer.
Peter Peacock was being asked by Chris Ballance, Green Party list MSP for the South of Scotland, whether Scottish Borders would lose additional support for small rural schools if a number of them were closed. Mr Peacock said the council received pound;1.164 million this year, based on the 11.2 per cent of children who attended schools with fewer than 70 pupils. The figures would be pound;1.15 million and pound;1.198 million in each of the next two financial years, based on a pupil count of 10.1 per cent. Any change will not be made until the Scottish Executive's next spending review in 2007.