Sunday, January 29, 2023

MP attacks Labour over Thurrock Academies

Jackie Doyle-Price has roundly criticised Labour suggestions that Academies are ‘selective schools by the back door’. The comments have been made by Labour Portfolio holder Diana Hale and supported by Ed Balls during his visit to Tilbury.

Jackie said, “I have spoken to most of the secondary heads in Thurrock – they recognise that Academy status will strengthen their ability to serve their local communities.

Gateway Academy wants to expand and create a primary school to give a better offering to children in Tilbury.

Ockendon wants to complete its building programme to offer better opportunities to children in Ockendon.

Chafford Hundred wants to create a sixth form in line with the wishes of parents and pupils, not what the council decrees it should offer.

The law is explicit. All ability academies of the kind we have in Thurrock are not able to introduce selection. Any suggestion that Academies will suddenly select by ability is scaremongering. What we are trying to create is strong local schools serving their local communities. But that is Thurrock Labour – never let the truth get in the way of a good story – particularly at election time”


  1. There appears to be a war of words going on about academies in Thurrock. There is obviously good and bad about then as with anything.

    I have a word of caution for parents around academies. Tilbury St Chads and Torrells in Chadwell were amalgamated into one school and got the Gateway Academy. You can see the new building at the bottom of Chadwell Hill, nice and shiny but often surrounded by water due to flooding. A new dawn for education Chadwell and Tilbury parents were told…..

    Year on year it is the same old story.

    Parents have just recieved the letters to say that because of high demand many of thier children will not be able to go to the Gateway in September and will be shipped out to other schools around the borough and to do this they will get a bus that takes them straight past the gates of the Gateway academy. No free school buses anymore so all cost to be paid for by the parents. We are not talking about a few children here we are talking big numbers.

    If the Gateway are successful and build a new Manor Infants and Junior school on the site as JDP is saying in her statement above this will only increase the numbers that will not get a place from Tilbury and Chadwell as those at the purpose built school will get the first places in the school.

    Ask parents in Chadwell and Tilbury if they would have wanted the new school built now they have seen the impact it has had on their children being displaced around the borough and you will get a resounding no.

    These are facts and they have been reported year on year in the local press.
    Chadwell and Tilbury children are not getting places in the new academy that was built for THEM and that is not scaremongering Jackie Doyle Price.

    Support the head to Increase the size of the secondary school to educate those it was built for, expand the sixth form as others are doing in Thurrock only when you have cracked this nut should they think about educating the infants and junior age children.


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