"We have run out of options" — an Isle of Wight primary school is to close at the end of the year, it has been confirmed.

After years of ups and down, the Isle of Wight Council has made the final decision to close Chillerton and Rookley Primary School on December 31.

Cabinet last night (Thursday) decided to publish a public notice ratifying the amalgamation of The Stenbury Federation's two schools — Godshill and Chillerton and Rookley.

Speaking yesterday, cabinet member for education, Cllr Debbie Andre, said it had been a long journey to get to this point but there were now no alternatives, no children at the school and they could not recruit teachers.

She said: "No one wants to close a school but despite doing everything to keep the school open we have now run out of options."

Cllr Andre thanked the headteacher and staff of Chillerton and Rookley who supported pupils to the very end; council officers for their work and the parents and families of the school that stayed.

The number of pupils enrolled at the school has now dwindled to nine, and since January, they have been taught in Godshill due to a lack of a teacher.

The future of the school has been debated since 2021, after The Stenbury Federation asked the council to merge its two schools together due to funding challenges.

The amount of money a school gets each year is linked to how many pupils it has, so falling pupil numbers led to tighter budgets.

Over the years, Chillerton and Rookley has now accumulated a deficit of more than £74,000 — equivalent to a third of its annual budget.

The staffing costs of the school equate to three-quarters of the school's budget at more than £194,000.

A decision on the school's future had been paused since February 2022 as other alternatives were explored but none were successful — leading the authority to come to the same conclusion that closing the school would be the best way forward.

Campaigners had tried to save the school by looking into various options for the school and its building.

No decision has yet been made about the long-term use of the building.