School nurse axed despite parent pleas to save her


School staff cuts, including the loss of the school nurse after 14 years’ service, have left parents incensed.

Pupils at Brackley’s Magdalen College School have lost a ‘lifeline’, according to one concerned mother, after school nurse Denise Stevens, along with other support staff, were told they were being made redundant.

A petition signed by almost 300 pupils was set up online in an effort to save the popular school nurse’s job. But to no avail.

Laura Kuhn attended MCS herself and has one daughter at the school and a son who will start in September.

She said: “My daughter will be gutted. She spends so much time helping children in many different ways. That is just terrible she has to leave. What is that school coming to?”

Despite repeated requests for information, the school would not confirm how many staff were to lose their jobs or why the cuts had been made, aside from stating the school was undergoing ‘necessary restructuring’.

Helen Tarrant, another concerned parent, said she felt the presence of a school nurse was paramount to the safety and welfare of the students.

She added: “Mrs Stevens does so much more than just hand out plasters to our children! No amount of first aid training that other staff members receive can replace the many years of experience that a qualified nurse has.”

The school refused to comment on the first aid provision which will replace Mrs Stevens when she leaves her post.

Claire, who asked that her full name be withheld, is the mother of two pupils at MCS.

She said Mrs Stevens had been instrumental in keeping her sick child at the school.

She said: “I am horrified and very disappointed that the health and wellbeing of our children is being sacrificed to save money. At what cost?”

Mrs Stevens told the Advertiser she was touched by the support of parents and was upset to be leaving.

She said: “I am going to miss the children terribly.

“I have tried to look after them like I would want my own children looked after.”

The school released this statement: “The school has been undergoing a restructuring process as a necessary part of the next stage in its development.

“As a result we are losing a small number of support staff. We would like to take this opportunity to acknowledge the significant contributions made by these valued members of staff.

“High quality pastoral care, welfare support and guidance continue to be an important part of our school provision and will be a strength of the new structure.

“Details of how this will be achieved is in the process of being communicated to parents.”