More new free schools for Hammersmith and Fulham

arkburlprimHammersmith and Fulham continues to lead the way for free schools.

In September we will see the opening of the Ark Burlington Danes Primary. It is confirmed by inclusion on the list of free schools published this morning.

There was also news of the following:

TBAP 16-19 Academic AP Academy in Hammersmith

This school will be the latest addition to the successful Tri-Borough Alternative Provision (TBAP) chain of schools and will be located alongside the Bridge AP Academy in Hammersmith. The free school will offer the International Baccalaureate to 16- to 19-year-olds who may not succeed in mainstream sixth forms, but have the potential to go to university. Students will be supported by a rigorous mentoring program that will help them meet very high academic standards.

For too long Pupil Referral Units were just (very expensive) places to dump excluded children who had been disruptive in mainstream schools. The system would write them off.

That is not the approach of Seamus Oates, the inspirational Executive Headteacher of the TBAP Trust. It’s not just that he does a good job to turn things round for the children at the Bridge Academy. It’s that others can be held to account.

The challenge becomes: “If it is possible for excluded children sent to the Bridge Academy to flourish academically then why should that not be possible for excluded children placed in alternative provision elsewhere.”

Free schools have represent a revolution for choice, innovation and high expectations. They have helped to drive up standards.

What a terrible thought that in May we could have a Labour Government that would be hostile to such schools and threaten this progress.

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