Search

Plan to open new free school in Islington is announced

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 News Stories

Yesterday, 13:07
St John the Evangelist in Duncan Terrace Islington has had many of its staues vandalised

A “disturbed” vandal caused significant damage to several 200-year-old statues at a Catholic church in Islington.

Yesterday, 10:00
3D printer

Teenagers in the borough can sign up to try 3D printing, wear virtual reality headsets and make their own computer game this summer.

Islington Park Street residents and Cllr Caroline Russell outside One Housing Group offices

A “family” fighting to stay in their home of 39 years took the battle to the doorstep of those threatening to evict them today.

Serious incident in Rainham

A teenager was stabbed in broad daylight on a busy Finsbury street yesterday.

Most read news

Competitions

Good times with Greenall's!

Good times with Greenall’s, a Great British gin sponsors Great British racing.

Escape to the picturesque sights of Cornwall

Summer is finally here, and what is the number one holiday location in the UK during the warmer months? Cornwall, of course!

Digital Edition

Image
Read the Islington Gazette e-edition today E-edition
Family Notices 24


Our trusted business finder