THE Gateway Learning Community Trust [GLC] has today announced that it will be bidding to open a second free school to serve the Tilbury community. Following the runaway success of the Gateway Primary Free School, the GLC is now planning to open a new secondary free school to meet the explosion in demand.
Kevin Sadler, the CEO of the GLC explained that the new school will be the sixth school in the GLC’s multi-academy trust and will mean that all Tilbury students can go to a Tilbury secondary school. He went on to say, “This is a really strong bid because of the continuing support of Jackie-Doyle Price, MP who together with the GLC, believe passionately in the communities of Tilbury and Chadwell.”
He added, “The Gateway Academy has already increased the number of students it takes each year from 180 to 210 and cannot cope with the its increasing popularity and burgeoning demand: there is currently a waiting list of over 50 young people waiting to get into Year 7. It’s beyond doubt that we need a new secondary school as Tilbury continues to develop.”
The new school will build upon the amazing success of the Tilbury Pioneer Academy [formerly Manor Primary], once described as the worst primary school in Thurrock and now one of the best. The school will be renamed Tilbury Pioneer Free School and will expand to take 30 additional primary-aged pupils in each year group [Reception to Year 6] as well as 120 secondary aged students from years 7 to 11, creating an ‘all-through’ school.
The bid will involve the demolition of the current wooden junior building, constructed in 1936 with a 20-year life expectancy and the infant building, opened in the 1980s, with a purpose-built state-of-the- art academy, fit for the 21st century.
Subject to a successful bid, the new building will open its doors to primary pupils in 2018 and will welcome its first secondary students a year later.
Mr Dan George, the architect of the improvements at Tilbury Pioneer, said “This is a massive vote of confidence in the GLC and Tilbury. I’m really excited to start building upon our success and plan the best possible learning experience for our young people from Nursery to Year 11.” The public can comment at TPFS@theglc.org.uk.