TALKS with parents on changing the catchment zones of two Dunfermline schools will begin next month.

Members of Fife Council's cabinet committee agreed that the consultation can now start which will affect those living near Carnegie and Touch primary schools.

The move comes as Carnegie Primary continues to burst at the seams with there being no scope to extend amid further housebuilding in the area.

A report to councillors from education chief Carrie Lindsay said it was a "geographic imperative" that the catchment area was realigned to allow those children living in that area to go to their local school.

She said Carnegie Primary was continuing to operate above the maximum occupancy while Touch Primary was currently operating at around 57 per cent of capacity.

"To resolve these catchment anomalies and to ensure that new housing developments can be, as far as possible, zoned to one primary school catchment area, a proposal has been formulated to re-zone the catchment areas," explained Ms Lindsay.

"It was concluded that the recommendation within the proposal should be that the primary catchment areas of Carnegie Primary School and Touch Primary School should be re-zoned to ensure that sufficient capacity is available across the area to respond to the challenges of new developments and to ensure the school estate is sufficient in size to manage the pupil demand."

At Thursday's meeting, Shelagh McLean, head of education and children's services, stressed that children already at the schools would not be affected.

"We won't move children already in Carnegie Primary School itself but we anticipate over time, the roll will decrease because we are moving children from one catchment to the other if the proposal was to be accepted."

The altered areas would see almost all of the pupils in the Touch Primary catchment remain in the same zone apart from some housing to the east of South Larch Road in The Heathers Wynd, South Larch Way and South Larch Lane.

They would be changed to Carnegie Primary to allow pupils to attend school with their immediate neighbours.

The postcodes identified in the proposal will ensure that the houses furthest away from Carnegie – such as Shearwater Crescent/Osprey Crescent – will be zoned to the closer Touch Primary.

The official consultation period will include meetings in Carnegie Primary – on October 26; and at Touch Primary – on November 1; as well as several drop-in sessions.

Consultation will close on December 1 and a report would then be submitted to Education Scotland with a decision from Fife Council's education cabinet likely in March.