Archive for July, 2011
Author: article on Bolingbroke Academy website
The public consultation on the academy proposals took place in autumn 2010. The full consultation report can be read here.
ARK held initial information sessions about the academy building plans in May 2011, followed by two pre-planning consultation sessions in July 2011.
ARK and Wandsworth Council have been working with contractor Carillion PLC to develop the academy design and are now able to share the detailed plans with local parents and residents.
The plans show a new four form entry secondary academy and excellent new facilities for the Heritage Medical Practice. During the remodelling process we will work closely with English Heritage to preserve the period features protected under the building’s Grade II listing.
Carillion PLC have developed a design that preserves the building’s features and provides a high quality environment for the new school. The design includes additional staircases to improve the circulation around the building at lesson changes. Renewable energy technology is proposed in the form of photo voltaic cells fitted on the flat roofs.
The medical practice will be located on the Lower Ground floor with its own separate entrance on Wakehurst Road and its own comfortable waiting room.
To share your views about the plans with the school, please send your comments to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Author: Ian Hamilton
It’s been about 6months since the last proposals for the Forthbridge School site were voted down. There have been some recent developments:
- We recently chased Children’s Services and we were very disappointed to discover they have made no investigations whatsoever into the local access issue (despite the clear wording of the January amendment proposed by Cllr Jonathan Cook). They have stated this is because Belleville is definitely applying to become an Academy. [See our previous article].
- I also spoke with Cllr Cook last night. He is very excited about a new campaign for a free school in the area, but confirmed to me that this free school campaign will be looking for a completely new site i.e. it will definitely NOT be about the Forthbridge Rd site.He thus has not been chasing Children’s Services at all on the Forthbridge issue, but said last night told me he would.
- At least one set of parents has lodged another formal objection via the Office of the Schools Adjudicator to this year’s admission arrangements at the Forthbridge site, ahead of the 31st July deadline. An objection we made last year was not upheld.
- The building work on the Forthbridge site is on schedule and nearing completion and children will start attending in September. Bring on the traffic!
Where do things stand?
We have always been aware that Belleville was considering Academy status. If granted (and there’s little reason to think it won’t be) this status means the Governors of Belleville have full control over their own admission policy and the local authority i.e. Wandsworth Council has nothing to do with admissions at Belleville. Any admission arrangements still of course have to conform to the Admissions Code (changes to which are currently being consulted on by the Dept
Where from here?
If we do still want to campaign for at least some local access to the Forthbridge Rd site then we need to win over the staff, Governors and parents of Belleville itself. (I think this actually was always going to be where our campaign ended up) I sense there are many current parents at Belleville who sympathise with the inherent unfairness of not being able to attend a school on your doorstep.
It’s also clear to me that in the past consultations this very simple issue has
been rather muddled-up (mainly through the council’s involvement!) with more complicated issues of sibling admission and the lack of places for would-be parents living south of Honeywell school. Often it’s been would-be parents rather than current parents who have opposed discussions on any local admission to Forthbridge.
Furthermore Belleville is a clearly an excellent school which does understand the importance the links to it’s local community and so I really do feel there is an argument to be made there.
Personally though I am quite jaded by all this and we clearly need some new blood in the campaign if it is to take this new direction. Several people emailed back in January offering more help and support and I would encourage you to email again (using the contact box for example, or in comments below), if you are interested in taking the campaign forward.
If no one responds I guess we may be dead in the water.
Author: Cyril Richert
Belleville Primary School to become Academy
According to a recent press report from Wandsworth Council, Belleville Primary School in Battersea has applied for academy status under the Government’s education reforms.
The governing bodies at both schools have now voted in favour of applying for academy status following consultations with staff, parents, pupils and their local communities.
f their bids are approved by the Department for Education (DfE) it would mean the schools have greater powers of independence and are funded directly by central government rather than through the council.
Bolingbroke High School converted from “free School” status to Academy
The borough’s first ‘free school’ is set to open in the former Bolingbroke Hospital building in September 2012. Local parents’ group the Neighbourhood School Campaign has successfully applied to convert the building into the new Bolingbroke Academy which would be run by education charity ARK Schools.
Bolingbroke Academy would be independent of the council and free to attend for local children.
ARK Schools that will be running the new Bolingbroke Academy free school in Battersea has appointed the head teacher who will be in charge when it opens to pupils next year.
The educational charity has appointed Claire Edis as the founding principal of the academy. Ms Edis is currently the deputy headteacher of Parliament Hill School in Camden – a girls’ comprehensive with a mixed sixth form.
Her appointment has been welcomed by the council’s spokesman on schools and education. Cllr Kathy Tracey said: “This is a top line appointment and further proof that this new free school is going to offer a very attractive choice to parents of secondary age children in this part of the borough. The day that this free school opens its gates is now drawing closer and closer…”
[By the way, I thought that the Council said that it was no longer a free school as it was converted into an Academy now... The terms are not that easy to understand as there is some confusion inside the Council itself.]
The school, which will open on the site of Battersea’s former Bolingbroke Hospital will admit its first 120 Year 7 pupils next September and will continue growing each year until full. It will have four forms of entry each academic year.
The academy will have the normal admissions rules of a state funded school with most pupils joining from five feeder primary schools – Belleville, Falconbrook, High View, Honeywell and Wix.
It is promising a “rigorous academic education” that will prepare all its pupils for university courses.
The curriculum will have excellent English and mathematics at its core, to provide the strongest possible educational platform from which all subjects can be taught effectively. The school will set very high achievement targets for all pupils and will organise its curriculum and teaching to make it possible for all pupils to reach their targets.
A full curriculum will be in place to age 14 including all current National Curriculum subjects including separate sciences, design/technology and IT, as well as music, drama, foreign languages, art and sport. The curriculum for pupils entering the school with attainment below age level will be designed to accelerate their progress so that they can participate fully in the whole curriculum.
From age 14 the school will offer a full programme of GCSEs, together with a selection of other courses to ensure a programme which challenges and meets the needs of all pupils. The expectation will be that almost all pupils should continue to study at least one humanity and a language to age 16.
From the age of 16 the school will offer a full programme of A levels, together with a selection of other courses to ensure a programme which challenges and meets the needs of all pupils. Other course options such as International Baccalaureate and Pre-U will also be considered for inclusion nearer the opening date, when the likely extent of demand for such programmes can be determined.
The idea for a new free school on the Bolingbroke site started when a group of local parents set up the Neighbourhood School Campaign (NSC) to campaign for a non-selective, socially inclusive, non-denominational secondary school in this part of Battersea.
Author: Cyril Richert
As expected (and well on schedule) a new proposal has been released last month.
New plans for the redevelopment of the Ram Brewery site in Wandsworth Town will be on public display this week.
The proposal is described on the developer’s website:
- 558 residential apartments
- Office space (7,218 sq m) located predominantly in the buildings adjacent to the stable block on Armoury Way
- Heritage buildings (7,335 sq m)
- Shops, cafes, bars and restaurants (5,093 sq m)
- Showroom (1,222 sq m)
- Leisure uses such as a pool, spa, gym (1,039 sq m)
Author: Cyril Richert
Network Rail has commissioned Steer Davies Gleave to carry out a study to assess the ‘Economic Value of Investment in Rail Stations’ . The aim of this study is to quantify the local and national benefits from station investment, particularly focusing on broader impacts on regeneration, development, land use and other wider effects.
Steer Davies Gleave has worked alongside Network Rail to identify a number of stations use as case studies for the project. Clapham Junction is one of these stations and a core element of the research is to speak to key stakeholders and discuss:
- The objectives of the station investment scheme, and what impacts the investment has had/will have.
- How the station fits in to the wider regeneration of the local area, including impacts on the property market (e.g. whether there have been, or are expected to be, effects on the type, rate, scale and value of development).
More on the same topic very soon…
 Of Network Rail’s £35 billion investment programme between 2009 and 2014, £11.7 billion is to be spent specifically on increasing capacity, either through major projects such as Thameslink (£2.7 billion during 2009-2014) or Crossrail, or through smaller-scale investments including new and longer trains and schemes to lengthen platforms. The scale of the enhancement programme in Control Period 4 (2009-2014) is more than twice that of Control Period 3, covering 2004-09. Whereas enhancement expenditure accounted for approximately 11% of total rail expenditure between 2004 and 2009 it now accounts for 33%. Eddington’s report suggested that transport improvements should be aimed at “tackling problems and shortages”, as these are most likely to offer real benefits to passengers and freight users and offer best value-for-money. (source: Parliament publication)