THE governing bodies of Otterburn and West Woodburn First Schools are in discussions about the implementation of a possible federation between the two schools.

A consultation, headed by governors, has been carried out with parents in the two first schools about the proposals, including holding open events at the schools.

The outlined proposals will see the schools form under one governing body and children in years five and six at West Woodburn offered at Otterburn to provide educational continuity.

Northumberland County Council announced in July its decision to convert first schools to primary schools in the Haydon Bridge partnership to secure a sustainable model of education.

Chair of Governors for Otterburn First School, Margaret Tate, said: "It’s the best option to ensure the longevity of the school, and we are trying to keep transferring from one school to another to a minimum.

"It’s a very positive move, and any decision we make will be in the best interests of the children.”

Parent Lisa Crocker, who has a child at West Woodburn First School, said: "A lot of people aren't happy about the possibility of their child making an extra journey.

"My son already gets a bus to West Woodburn First School so to have to then get another to Otterburn makes it really complicated.

Some parents from Ridsdale have argued that if their child has to travel, they may as well take them to Bellingham Middle School.

Lisa added: "We're between a rock and a hard place on federating the two schools or to close West Woodburn."

The county council advises parents of children currently in year four at West Woodburn First School to apply for a place at Bellingham Middle School or another middle school of their choice.

It is anticipated that a decision will be made in the coming weeks.