FOUR primary schools in the Dales have made a formal pact to work closely together from September.

Headteachers and governors of Burnsall VA Primary, Cracoe and Rylstone VC Primary, Grassington VC Primary and Kettlewell Primary have agreed to share resources and expertise to become 'federated schools' from early next year.

And the headteachers have signed a 'memorandum of understanding' that they will work together from September, with the Burnsall school's head, Julie Morton Lee, acting as overall executive headteacher.

Kettlewell Primary School manager, Tracy Briggs, said: "This is a very exciting development for all four schools.

"Staff and governors from each one have been working very hard for some time to make this happen, so it is great to see it all coming together.

"We are all fairly small schools and this arrangement will enable us to pool resources, plan the curriculum and make the most of our budgets."

A consultation meeting on the federation, which is the next part of the process, will take place at St Margaret Catholic Church in Threshfield at 7pm on September 26.