Another month, another bit of school news. Or in this case, not one, not two but three pieces of schools related information that fall under the banner of FYI.
You’re already familiar with the plan to develop a Richmond Education and Enterprise Campus on the current Richmond College site at Egerton Road in Twickenham aren’t you? It’s the joint partnership between the College, El Brute, Harlequins and Haymarket Media. As part of the plans a new secondary school will be established, opening in 2017. In fact, you’re probably already thinking, “Didn’t I already comment on that proposal a while back?” And you’d be bloody right too. There was indeed an opportunity to feedback on the initial plans but now you’ve got another one. Yes really. This time it’s a chance to find out more about the detailed proposals. Deja vu all over again? Maybe, but in more depth. The consultation will be on the REEC website and there will also be drop-in sessions at Richmond College on 21st October and 4th November. The canvassing of views about a revamped site comes at time when the college has garnered more column inches in the Richmond & Twickenham Times. On this occasion it’s about drug taking and dealing in the playground on Craneford Way allegedly by college students.
Meanwhile St Richard Reynolds Catholic College ‘off of’ Clifden Road is consulting on switching to academy status. You will all recall the great brouhaha that surrounded the school’s approval. At that time, going down the academy route was deemed unsuitable by those seeking to set it up. Academy status would have meant that a maximum of 50% of the places could be allocated on the basis of faith. As it was, El Brute supported the school’s establishment under the ‘Voluntary Aided’ route where such limitations do not apply. Just two years down the line and it may be about to become an academy after all, funded directly by central government and with the greater freedom that status allows. One point of interest is that existing VA schools converting to academy status get to retain their own admissions policies. Funny dat. The consultation runs until 17th October.
And finally, Turing House, the school with no home, has issued an ‘autumn update’. It seems as if there’s some progress going on behind the scenes to find that elusive home. According to their website: “The Government, and the Local Authority, are now in confidential discussions over a number of potential permanent sites; one of these has the benefit of the Local Authority owning the freehold but has some very difficult planning constraints. However other possible sites are also being examined in detail”. The hope from the TH brigade is that they’ll be able to provide ‘concrete information’ about a permanent home and any temporary arrangements by the end of the 2014. Linked to this, they’ve extended the deadline to January for those seeking September 2015 entry.