Wednesday, April 17, 2024

William Edwards get approval to build new school

Orsett Heath Academy

WILLIAM Edwards School has been granted approval by the government to open a new free school in Thurrock.

The new school is to be called the Orsett Heath Academy and it is expected to open in September 2019.

YT understands that it will be built on an area called the Gammon Field.

The original plans saw space for sporting facilities for athletics,, rugby and football. This could mean the return of Grays Athletic to the area.

Orsett Heath Academy is on a list that includes 27 new free schools in the South East.

Today’s announcement comes ahead of the publication of the government’s White Paper, which will set out plans to increase the number of grammar schools.

The Department for Education has not revealed whether any of the 131 new free schools will be selective and would only say that this would be impossible unless the law was changed.

The DfE dismissed questions about whether any of the new free schools could become academically selective in the future as “speculation”.

Education secretary Justine Greening said: “We need schools that can bring out the best in every single child no matter where they’re growing up, how much their parents earn, or however different their talents are.

“That’s why these new schools are so important – they give us the school places we need for the future, and they also give parents more choices to find a great school place in their area that’s right for their child.”

Shadow education secretary Angela Rayner said new school places were “welcome and necessary”, but accused the government of failing to deliver the number of places needed by 2020.

She added: “The free schools programme has been proven to be an enormously expensive and inefficient way to create school places.

“Today’s announcement alone almost certainly comes with a huge price tag, without necessarily even providing new school places in the areas that need them most.”

More reaction to follow.

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