UNITED KINGDOM, July 1, 2018 (Standard): The Swaminarayan School, the only independent Hindu school in Europe, will close its doors by 2020, it was announced this week. Heads at the US$16,000-a-year faith school in Neasden, which include a prep and senior school, announced the news with a "heavy heart", blaming "increasing regulatory requirements" and the competition from free state-funded Hindu schools. The Akshar Educational Trust, which runs the school, added that it was proving difficult to "recruit and retain teachers." But parents today accused the school's trustees of failing to give notice so that the decision could be challenged and that it was a "smack in the face".
Ketan Sheth, 50, a local Labour councillor who has two children at the school, claimed there had been no recruitment issues. He said: "I think they have thrown in the towel, and they [the trustees] are not as committed to this school as the parents and wider community." The school, which caters for ages two to 18, opened in 1992 as the first private Hindu school in Europe. It has been visited by Tony Blair and Prince Charles and there are 260 boys and 234 girls enrolled. In a statement on its site, Akshar Educational Trust chair, Jitu Patel, wrote: "It is indeed very sad, particularly for our pupils, staff and parents. We explored several options before arriving at this difficult decision. We have given all parents one year's notice to find an alternative school as well as a commitment to our staff that their employment is secure for the academic year 2018/19."
See also: https://www.gg2.net/swaminarayan-schoo ... ces-closure-by-july-2019/