By BEN TURNER Education Reporter
PARENTS are hoping to enlist former Spice Girl Mel C in the battle to save her old high school from the axe.
Fairfield High in Widnes faces closure as part of Halton council's £100m plans to transform its schools under the government's Building Schools For The Future scheme.
Dwindling pupil numbers are among the factors for the axe with its roll dropping from 1,150 to 700 since 1999.
But today parents revealed they have contacted Sporty Spice, aka Melanie Chisholm, in a bid to highlight their campaign to save the academically-sound school, whose five A* to C GCSE pass rate rocketed from 36 to 46% this year.
The singer, who has rejoined her
Parents hope star can help stop axe
former bandmates for a Spice Girls reunion and world tour, attended the school from 1986 to 1990 and performed there during her solo days.
Campaigners hope securing such high profile support will add weight to the fight against plans to "federate" the school on the site of Wade Deacon High and close Fairfield within five years.
Lynne Parsons, whose son Liam, 13, attends Fairfield,, said: "Its smaller class sizes mean it's able to focus on personal development.
"We've got in touch with her management and we're hopeful Mel will want to save it. The school, with its emphasis on performing arts and getting the best out of every child,
has helped make who she is."
PR representative for I
Mel, confirmed she had
contacted the singer's
management about the
Head teacher Jeff
Hughes also believes the
school closure would be a" mistake".
He said: "While acknow- \ ledging pupil numbers have -fallen, the birth rates have grown over the last five years and continue to grow.
"BSF is supposed to be about the long-term and the danger is doing something now they regret down the line."
The council says consultation is ongoing and its executive board will decide in November.