School’s bid to be an academy

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A SECONDARY school has held a consultation with parents about becoming an academy.

Guilsborough School held an evening for parents and governors on Wednesday, December 15, to enable them to discuss the plans and ask any questions.

The school has already asked the Department of Education whether it would support an application for it to become an academy.

Deputy headteacher Will Reese said: “There were around 20 parents who turned up to the event.

“We would have liked more but the last week of term is never the ideal time to have these kind of meetings.”

The Government is trying to encourage schools to become academies as the move would give them greater freedom.

Under current plans, schools could set their own curriculum and be free from the control of the local education authority.

Mr Reese added: “It would free us from the proposed changes to the national curriculum which would mean we can teach the students the way we want to.

“As a relatively successful school out in the sticks, we have a reasonable amount of independence already and if we were to become an academy then it would be a logical extension of the things we do already.”

He also believes the meeting will have helped calm parents’ worries about the changes.

Mr Reese said: “I don’t think there were any major concerns about the plans, I think it was very much a case of parents looking for reassurance.

“We told parents that we are not going to change the name of the school, or the uniform or anything like that.

“I would imagine the pupils will probably see very little difference if the school became an academy.

“We just want to make sure that we can provide the best education possible for the children at this school.”

A further meeting to tell people how the plans are progressing is due to take place at the school on Wednesday, January 12, at 6pm.

An overall decision on academy status will be made by the school’s governors and is likely to be made in March.

Mr Reese added: “We would become an academy almost as soon as we make the application, so it is something that could happen soon.”