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Cancer mum forced to continue fight with school bureaucrats
A COUPLE appealing for their two young sons to go to the same school so they can support each other through their mother’s terminal illness remain “frustrated” as they continue their battle with Dorset County Council.
As reported previously in the Daily Echo, cancer sufferer Michelle Amey and her husband Stuart were told their six-year-old son George will not be able to join Charlie, nine, at Mudeford Junior School due to a lack of places.
Yesterday evening Mr Amey and Christchurch councillor Lesley Dedman met with Sara Tough, the director for Children’s Services at Dorset County Council.
Following the meeting, Mr Amey said he was told the council is looking into the matter but remains unable to offer George, who is currently a pupil at Mudeford Infants, a place at Mudeford Junior School with Charlie.
“It’s frustrating,” he said. “They haven’t changed their mind. They are still saying there’s no room.
“I retain that we should be seen as exceptional circumstances,” he added.
The couple are hopeful Michael Gove MP, Secretary of State for Education, will write to the authority backing their appeal. But for now the family’s battle continues.
Mr Amey said: “George will leave school in a couple of weeks and it’s all still up in the air. All of his friends are going to see their new classrooms but he can’t go. It’s not fair on him.
“And it’s not fair on the rest of the family,” he added.
“Michelle has been really poorly and the stress of this is not helping.”
Describing the meeting as “very positive”, Cllr Dedman said she was hopeful a resolution will be found.
She said: “She [Mrs Tough] was very sympathetic and is really trying to get George into the school he needs to go to.
“There were a lot of ideas put on the table,” she added.
Mrs Amey was originally diagnosed with skin cancer seven years ago, but the deadly disease has now spread to her brain, kidneys, lungs, liver and lymph nodes.
Two years ago she was given the devastating news that she had just nine months to live but has since been taking a trial drug to give her more time to spend with her family.