FOUR primary schools have been allocated tens of thousands of pounds to help ease pressure on school places this September.

The Bradford Schools Forum today met for the first time this financial year, and among the items discussed were funding for the four expanding schools and a bid to the Government for almost £500,000 for more school places for two-year-olds.

School expanding this coming school year are Idle Primary, Wycliffe Primary in Shipley, Stocks Lane Primary, plus Menston Primary, which will have a "bulge" class to deal with extra pupils.

In total the forum allocated £94,259 from its growth fund to the four schools to help increase provision to deal with these extra pupils.

Idle CE Primary is doubling the size of its classes from 30 pupils a year to 60 starting with September's reception, and will be allocated £40,233.

Wycliffe CE Primary will increase its admission numbers from 45 to 60 a year, and will be allocated an extra £20,116.

Stocks Lane Primary in Clayton Heights is being allocated £20,116 by the forum. In September it will have a "bulge" class of 15 extra pupils before moving from 15 new pupils a year to 30 in September 2016.

Menston Primary School is being given an extra £13,794 to take on more pupils in its bulge class, which has already opened.

A report to the forum said: "The Bradford District has one of the fastest growing populations in the country, leading to an increased demand on the available places.

"This increase in demand is being addressed through a phased expansion of a number of primary schools and academies across the district.

"The local authority has a duty to ensure that sufficient high quality provision is available to meet the needs of all Bradford district children."

The forum also agreed to write to Education Secretary Nicky Morgan for permission to allocate £430,000 from the district's dedicated schools grant to create new places for two-year-olds.

Government policy calls for at least 80 per cent of eligible children to be able to access a free school place at two.

So far the district has been able to meet that target in most areas, but there is a shortfall in other areas, identified by their closest children's centre.

In Bierley there is a shortage of 29 places, in Heaton, 45 places and Strong Close in Keighley is 22 places short.

Owlet also has a shortfall, of 27 places, but the forum was told that work is under way to provide these without the need for capital spend.

Andrew Redding, senior schools finance manager, told the forum: "We have identified three developments that can deliver these places."