Search

Plan to open new free school in Islington is announced

PUBLISHED: 07:03 23 July 2012

Michael Gove has announced the first free school in Islington

Michael Gove has announced the first free school in Islington

PA Wire/Press Association Images

The first of the government’s controversial free schools to be set up in Islington was announced by education minister Michael Gove on Friday.

Mary Magdelene Academy, in Liverpool Road, Holloway, has been given permission to set up The Courtyard, a special school situated in the old coroner’s court adjacent to the church grounds.

The new school is set to open in September 2013 and will have space for 36 students, aged between 15 and 19, who are highly functioning but have autistic disorder.

Like all free schools it is funded directly by the government rather than the council, and will have freedom to teach what it wants, as long as it’s judged to be fair and balanced.

But some people are critical of free schools, and academies, because they take money away from local authorities.

Ken Muller, assistant branch secretary of Islington National Union of Teachers (NUT), said: “We are totally opposed to free schools because they undermine the school system and give disproportionate amounts of money to these schools at the expense of others in the borough.

“They are also a step toward privatisation of education and away from locally accountable state schools.”

Paul Hollingum, head teacher of Mary Magdelene, said: “There is no private company in the background and we don’t need a lot of capital because we are converting the old coroner’s building.

“The local authority is keen to support us in this and we interviewed a lot of parents who were in favour.

“We are offering something that is desperately needed in the borough and creating much-needed jobs and services.

“It would be terrible to disadvantage these children because of a political agenda.”

0 comments

Latest Islington News Stories

Yesterday, 17:13

A British Transport Police officer was today fired for using “excessive and unnecessary force” on a member of public during an arrest at St Pancras station.

Yesterday, 15:06

Camden Passage neighbours have urged Islington Council to stop the “dismemberment” of the famous antiques street – after an upmarket deli called “Le Coq Epicier” applied to sell wine.

Yesterday, 11:06

Former council leader Terry Stacy is a loud Lib Dem activist, but also does a tonne of community work. The Gazette hears about his fascinating past.

Thu, 17:06

A scheme to boost the skills of people from black and minority ethnic backgrounds has set the foundation of 12 adult learners’ building careers.

Thu, 13:53

A dad accused of murdering his one-year-old boy and trying to kill his twin sister at their Finsbury Park home appeared at the Old Bailey today.

Thu, 10:18

Detectives investigating the killing of Jonathon “JJ” McPhillips in Upper Street have made a fourth arrest.

Thu, 07:00

‘Show some respect’ is the message from people on the Grade II-listed Golden Lane Estate to Islington Council and the City. The Gazette found out why plans for a school, private flats and a council tower block have angered them.

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Most read news

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Islington Gazette
e-edition today

Subscribe

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now