MP meets with Durham Free School parents as deadline to save it looms

The Chronicle is reporting that as the fate of Durham Free School hangs in the balance, one of its firmest critics has pledged to take the views of parents, pupils and teachers to schools secretary Nicky Morgan…

Durham City MP Roberta Blackman-Woods, who has been publicly opposed to the school from the start, visited the school for the first time after accepting an invitation from chair of governors John Denning.

Mr Denning said the MP listened carefully to the views expressed and promised to pass them on to the Education Secretary’s office this week.

He said: “The parents, teachers and especially the children, who were magnificent, left Mrs Blackman-Woods in no doubt of their commitment to, and support for, The Durham Free School.

“She didn’t promise to fight for the school, but since this was the first time she’d visited, and she has been opposed to the school from the start, it was the best we could hope for…”

Mrs Blackman-Woods, who has been a governor in a variety of schools for 30 years, acknowledged that parents did not agree with Ofsted’s conclusions but said it was “very unusual” for inspectors to find fault in so many areas, coupled with findings by the Education Funding Agency, to which governors have responded with an improvement plan…

She added: “I know why you would want to challenge that Ofsted report. I’m assuming you’ve got an evidence base to counter what’s in it, but my understanding is that the decision about the school was not made only on Ofsted.”

 
Interesting final line from the MP – any feedback on that? Please share in the comments or via Twitter…

 

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Comments

  1. Janet2

    Will Durham Free School be challenging the Financial Notice to Improve as well?  It’s taxpayers’ money that’s being spent on this school which should never have been allowed to be established.  There were already surplus places in the area. It was irresponsible of the proposers to push for this school.  Trouble is, it’s the children who’ll now have to be moved if the school closes.

  2. Janet2

    Will Durham Free School be challenging the Financial Notice to Improve as well?  It’s taxpayers’ money that’s being spent on this school which should never have been allowed to be established.  There were already surplus places in the area. It was irresponsible of the proposers to push for this school.  Trouble is, it’s the children who’ll now have to be moved if the school closes.

  3. lovedurhamfree

    She is said to have made somewhat sinister remarks re the school at Durham Students Union later that night. robertabwMP SchoolsImprove

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