The future is looking brighter for four primary schools under scrutiny as part of Perth and Kinross Council’s estates review.
Consultations were launched with parents at Cleish, Grandtully, Logierait and Ruthvenfield late last year.
Council officers had proposed a series of outcomes, including the closure of Logierait and Grandtully — sparking protests from parents.
Next week, councillors will be asked to approve further action that could safeguard the schools for future generations.
After a campaign by parents, the local authority is now considering the introduction of nursery provision at Logierait.
In her report to councillors, service manager Carol Taylor said: “The most recent projections indicate that there may be sufficient ante pre-school and pre-school children to establish a small early learning and childcare provision at Logierait Primary.”
She added: “A feasibility study will be required to establish whether early learning and childcare could be delivered from the school building and the cost of any alterations.”
Lifelong learning committee members will be told next week that the roll at Grandtully has grown from 11 in 2015 to 27, representing a safe 63% capacity.
Ms Taylor has proposed that, given the rise in pupil numbers, the school stays open.
Cleish was included in the region-wide review because of the building’s “poor” condition and suitability.
However, with a roll of 53 pupils the school has a healthy occupancy level of 83%.
In her report to councillors, Ms Taylor urges that no decision is taken on the school until the results of a feasibility study are properly assessed. “A more detailed analysis of the feasibility is still required,” she said. “However, there is a strong indication that it will be possible to create an affordable, improved learning environment for the pupils.”
Ms Taylor said that assessment of feasibility study for further improvements at Ruthvenfield – including the impact of new homes at Almond Valley and Perth West – was also needed.
Local Conservative MSP Murdo Fraser welcomed the report. “These are all positive measures put forward by the council and emphasise their determination to invest in children’s education in Perth and Kinross,” he said.
SNP MP Pete Wishart added: “The stress that our school communities have been under is huge and whilst councillors still have to vote on the matter, it is somewhat reassuring to see scenarios which favour keeping schools open being recommended by council officers.”