Bolton Council is bidding to bring a primary school in Little Lever out of a budget deficit by cutting its capacity.

It comes amid low demand for primary places in the area in contrast with a lot of demand for secondary places.

A report for consideration by the cabinet member for children's services, Martin Donaghy, next week said Mytham Primary School, on Mytham Road, is into a budget deficit.

As a council-run community school it is funded according to its actual intake of pupils rather than being funded according to its anticipated intake of pupils, which is known as the Published Admissions Number (PAN).

Cllr Donaghy is asked to approve an application to the Schools Adjudicator to cut its capacity from a PAN of 50 to a PAN of 30 from September 2025.

A report said: "Mytham Primary School's available budget is £164,500 less than it would have been if the actual intake had been equal to the PAN of 50. 

"Although a reduction in PAN would mean a lower budget, it would be easier for planning, as staffing levels would be for one class per year group rather than staffing levels which are unsustainable for the funding."

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If approved there would still be a surplus of places in Little Lever as well as in other areas such as Farnworth and Kearsley, where the council is understood to be in contact with schools about the surplus of places.

It brings the PAN of Mytham Primary School in line with the PAN of Masefield Primary School and St Matthew's Primary School.

A report said: "There is capacity across Little Lever schools to accommodate any displaced pupils from Mytham Primary School. 

"It is acknowledged fewer pupils may have their first preference, if they have a first preference for Mytham Primary School, however, if no action is taken, schools in the area will become vulnerable and some will enter budget deficits. Action has to be taken to manage this."

The report is up for consideration by the cabinet member for children's services next week.

This article was written by Jack Tooth. To contact him, email or follow @JTRTooth on Twitter.