FURIOUS parents whose children did not get their first choice Canvey secondary school are blaming the county council for closing down a school.

Families from the east of the island would have happily sent their youngsters to Furtherwick Park School, but it is shutting down as part of the county council’s reorganisation of education on Canvey.

So they applied instead for places at the next closest secondary, Castle View, but were turned down. Now the only option is Cornelius Vermuyden, which is at the other end of the island.

Castle Point MP Bob Spink, who is backing the parents, said: “When the county council closed one of our schools, it told Canvey parents they would have a choice of the remaining two schools. Canvey has yet again been betrayed by the council.”

The county council has confirmed eight pupils have not been offered their first choice of Castle View and will go to Cornelius Vermuyden.

Lisa Hope, 44, of Marine Parade, is angry after her son was not offered a place. She said: “All his friends are going to Castle View and he’s going to have to trek to the other end of the island. This has left him distraught.”

The council decided to close Furtherwick Park because of declining admission rates.

Castle View has been gradually raising its intake to compensate before it moves into a £28million building in Furtherwick Road in 2012.

Dr Spink has called for the authority to meet with parents to resolve the situation.

Stephen Castle, the council’s cabinet member for education, said: “I am pleased that all secondary students from Canvey have been guaranteed a placement at one of the Canvey schools, either Castle View School or Cornelius Vermuyden School.

“Castle View is a more popular school, and as a result is at risk of oversubscription.”