Concern at Kidderminster free school 'value for taxpayers' money'

Kidderminster Shuttle: Concern at Kidderminster free school 'value for taxpayers' money' Concern at Kidderminster free school 'value for taxpayers' money'

THE headteacher of an independent school insists its free school move will provide value for public money amid concerns that taxpayers’ cash could be used to pay off existing loans.

It has emerged the Government is planning to buy land and buildings at Holy Trinity International School’s (HTIS) Birmingham Road site in Kidderminster from International Education Systems (IES) before the free school opens there in September.

Lead opposition education spokeswoman on Worcestershire County Council, Liberal councillor Fran Oborski, said cash from the sale could be used to pay off a £1.3 million loan from IES and buildings handed back to Holy Trinity for it to continue to be used as a school, questioning whether the move “really” represented value for money.

Headteacher Pamela Leek-Wright said it would “add a major new physical asset to the maintained school system in Kidderminster, at considerably less cost than many other recent free schools”.

She said a new trust would run the free school, separate from the current management, as IES would not be involved in the new set-up.

Following a Freedom of Information request, the Department for Education confirmed it was “in negotiations to purchase land and buildings used by HTIS from IES for the Holy Trinity Free School, following an independent valuation”, but did not reveal how much for.

Financial accounts submitted by Holy Trinity trustees to the Charity Commission for years ending August 31, 2011 and 2012 respectively, showed between the two years the school consolidated debts due within two years to several other IES-owned schools across the world into the £1.3 million IES loan, which can be paid back after five years.

The DfE says free school applicants must prove they are financially viable in order to succeed.

Holy Trinity’s free school bid in 2012 – for September, 2013 – was unsuccessful, but it was accepted when it applied again a year later. The DfE told The Shuttle its criteria had not been “sufficiently met” during the first bid.

Ms Leek-Wright said the move’s aim was to give parents a wider choice of school and make Holy Trinity’s education available to those previously unable to afford it.

She added: “The initial capital cost of each new free school place at Holy Trinity is due to be half the average initial capital cost per place at the 84 free schools which opened last September.

“The establishment of a free school at Holy Trinity is not just what local people have been demanding - it also represents value for money.”

But Cllr Oborski said: “All the details should have been made public in order for a fair discussion to have taken place.”

Free schools are non-profit making, independent state-funded schools, which have an obligation not to be academically selective.

Comments (22)

Please log in to enable comment sorting

11:30pm Thu 27 Feb 14

Europeanist64 says...

This proposal just does not add up and is worrying. The perfectly good secondary schools in Kidderminster, which have served both of my children very well, have SURPLUS places.

Why should taxpayers, have to fund another school in Kidderminster when there are surplus places in secondary schools .

Why did HT not make the full financial disclosure about possible debts when the consultation was undertaken?
This proposal just does not add up and is worrying. The perfectly good secondary schools in Kidderminster, which have served both of my children very well, have SURPLUS places. Why should taxpayers, have to fund another school in Kidderminster when there are surplus places in secondary schools . Why did HT not make the full financial disclosure about possible debts when the consultation was undertaken? Europeanist64
  • Score: 11

11:11am Fri 28 Feb 14

WolverleyLady says...

How can Mrs Oborski possibly decide if it is value for money or not when no actual figures have been released on the value of this asset purchase? I think that the people that have access to this information, namely the leadership team of IES, HTIS and the DfE will use their judgement to decide on the "value for money" issue. I am sure that the DfE would not be proceeding if it were not a justified and valid option. Must be cheaper than the alternative of a new capital build?

I do get a little tired of people continually raising the point that there is no need for this school? This is a long standing objection to the proposal and quite frankly one that has been proven inaccurate on many occasions. There may well be current surpluses at other schools, however there are significant plans to increase housing within the local area; this will obviously increase demand very quickly. It is also Government policy to provide parental choice on school places for their children. If parents do not want to apply for a place at a local state school and prefer to apply for a place at HTS then surely that should be respected? It clearly illustrates that existing schools for whatever reason are not meeting the needs and expectations of the local community in it's entirety?
There is much coverage in the press about standards in UK schools falling behind Europe, lets try something different.

"If you do what you have always done, then you will get what you have always gotten"
How can Mrs Oborski possibly decide if it is value for money or not when no actual figures have been released on the value of this asset purchase? I think that the people that have access to this information, namely the leadership team of IES, HTIS and the DfE will use their judgement to decide on the "value for money" issue. I am sure that the DfE would not be proceeding if it were not a justified and valid option. Must be cheaper than the alternative of a new capital build? I do get a little tired of people continually raising the point that there is no need for this school? This is a long standing objection to the proposal and quite frankly one that has been proven inaccurate on many occasions. There may well be current surpluses at other schools, however there are significant plans to increase housing within the local area; this will obviously increase demand very quickly. It is also Government policy to provide parental choice on school places for their children. If parents do not want to apply for a place at a local state school and prefer to apply for a place at HTS then surely that should be respected? It clearly illustrates that existing schools for whatever reason are not meeting the needs and expectations of the local community in it's entirety? There is much coverage in the press about standards in UK schools falling behind Europe, lets try something different. "If you do what you have always done, then you will get what you have always gotten" WolverleyLady
  • Score: -4

12:30pm Fri 28 Feb 14

Europeanist64 says...

You evade the issue that parents in Wyre Forest have the choice of 6 secondary schools, 5 are under capacity, and have spare places, as I found when choosing schools for my two, which I did separately according to their individual preferences and needs. So, there is already an abundance of under-subscribed parental choice.

I think the real issue here is the offer of a "private school style" education, which will eventually become selective. If people want that, then don't expect me to fund it, out of my taxes. Especially when there is a wide choice of good education in existing secondary schools across Wyre Forest.

It is worry IF the full financial situation was not made clear on application, or at the time of consultation.
You evade the issue that parents in Wyre Forest have the choice of 6 secondary schools, 5 are under capacity, and have spare places, as I found when choosing schools for my two, which I did separately according to their individual preferences and needs. So, there is already an abundance of under-subscribed parental choice. I think the real issue here is the offer of a "private school style" education, which will eventually become selective. If people want that, then don't expect me to fund it, out of my taxes. Especially when there is a wide choice of good education in existing secondary schools across Wyre Forest. It is worry IF the full financial situation was not made clear on application, or at the time of consultation. Europeanist64
  • Score: 14

6:23pm Sun 2 Mar 14

DOEPUBLIC says...

Clearly due diligence is being followed for the school's transition.
The following being transparent.
(1) If the school has previously been running at a loss, adjustments had to
be made for its viability

I find duplicity in political positions that are prepared to accept a trust for ContU but not one for the children at HTS.

The reality is that education functions appropriately when parent, teachers and students work together. In this case the elephant in the room is the political will not to accept smaller class sizes of 20 (note the requests of teacher's professional associations) and myopia as to the quality that the National Curriculum model of herding delivers. Does any other school provide http://www.ibo.org/, In addition, the deception that all parents actually have a choice of school. Most actually have a preference rejected, as the choice is made for them by the criteria of assessment.

The reality is that in this case parents are requesting the allocation of state finances allocated for their children's education to be used in this way.
To prevent the choice is unfair, if a viable alternative is not given in return.

Politicians that fail to accept this in my opinion are just recycling the same institutional thinking that is restricting the progress of all our children.

The addition of this approach to any school would also benefit in my opinion http://learningwitho
utlimits.educ.cam.ac
.uk/
Clearly due diligence is being followed for the school's transition. The following being transparent. (1) If the school has previously been running at a loss, adjustments had to be made for its viability I find duplicity in political positions that are prepared to accept a trust for ContU but not one for the children at HTS. The reality is that education functions appropriately when parent, teachers and students work together. In this case the elephant in the room is the political will not to accept smaller class sizes of 20 (note the requests of teacher's professional associations) and myopia as to the quality that the National Curriculum model of herding delivers. Does any other school provide http://www.ibo.org/, In addition, the deception that all parents actually have a choice of school. Most actually have a preference rejected, as the choice is made for them by the criteria of assessment. The reality is that in this case parents are requesting the allocation of state finances allocated for their children's education to be used in this way. To prevent the choice is unfair, if a viable alternative is not given in return. Politicians that fail to accept this in my opinion are just recycling the same institutional thinking that is restricting the progress of all our children. The addition of this approach to any school would also benefit in my opinion http://learningwitho utlimits.educ.cam.ac .uk/ DOEPUBLIC
  • Score: 1

7:14pm Sun 2 Mar 14

DOEPUBLIC says...

But Cllr Oborski said: “All the details should have been made public in order for a fair discussion to have taken place.”

I look forward to this policy being adopted by WCC and WFDC as a whole.
Bring on the open and fair discussions about our community. It will clearly contrast with the present cynical political charade conducted in the media.

It is clear that politicians pick and choose when clarity and transparency is required. Not everybody is fooled by institutional myopia.
But Cllr Oborski said: “All the details should have been made public in order for a fair discussion to have taken place.” I look forward to this policy being adopted by WCC and WFDC as a whole. Bring on the open and fair discussions about our community. It will clearly contrast with the present cynical political charade conducted in the media. It is clear that politicians pick and choose when clarity and transparency is required. Not everybody is fooled by institutional myopia. DOEPUBLIC
  • Score: 5

8:16pm Sun 2 Mar 14

Europeanist64 says...

Parents have a lot of choice in Wyre forest, as I found when "shopping" (ugh!) for my own children.

In cases where there is adequate choice, and some people want to try and make limited finances spent on a venture that isn't needed, then it is up to Cllr. Oborski and any politicians of any political colour to step in and ensure the whistle is blown.
Parents have a lot of choice in Wyre forest, as I found when "shopping" (ugh!) for my own children. In cases where there is adequate choice, and some people want to try and make limited finances spent on a venture that isn't needed, then it is up to Cllr. Oborski and any politicians of any political colour to step in and ensure the whistle is blown. Europeanist64
  • Score: 7

8:38pm Sun 2 Mar 14

williamsmommy says...

DOEPUBLIC wrote:
But Cllr Oborski said: “All the details should have been made public in order for a fair discussion to have taken place.”

I look forward to this policy being adopted by WCC and WFDC as a whole.
Bring on the open and fair discussions about our community. It will clearly contrast with the present cynical political charade conducted in the media.

It is clear that politicians pick and choose when clarity and transparency is required. Not everybody is fooled by institutional myopia.
Totally agree! Politicians asking for clarity to enable effective decision making....ha, brilliant!

Cllr Oborski is still making these judgements on facts that she doesn't actually have access to. I doubt she has even visited the school to see what it can offer.

This is an exciting step forward that we should be proud of as a town. If the local schools are so good then they have nothing to fear. I understand HTS is not allowed to be selective, therefore it is just another tool in the local education provision.
[quote][p][bold]DOEPUBLIC[/bold] wrote: But Cllr Oborski said: “All the details should have been made public in order for a fair discussion to have taken place.” I look forward to this policy being adopted by WCC and WFDC as a whole. Bring on the open and fair discussions about our community. It will clearly contrast with the present cynical political charade conducted in the media. It is clear that politicians pick and choose when clarity and transparency is required. Not everybody is fooled by institutional myopia.[/p][/quote]Totally agree! Politicians asking for clarity to enable effective decision making....ha, brilliant! Cllr Oborski is still making these judgements on facts that she doesn't actually have access to. I doubt she has even visited the school to see what it can offer. This is an exciting step forward that we should be proud of as a town. If the local schools are so good then they have nothing to fear. I understand HTS is not allowed to be selective, therefore it is just another tool in the local education provision. williamsmommy
  • Score: -1

10:48pm Sun 2 Mar 14

DOEPUBLIC says...

Europeanist64 wrote:
Parents have a lot of choice in Wyre forest, as I found when "shopping" (ugh!) for my own children.

In cases where there is adequate choice, and some people want to try and make limited finances spent on a venture that isn't needed, then it is up to Cllr. Oborski and any politicians of any political colour to step in and ensure the whistle is blown.
Whistles are entitled to be blown, but resonance should be sort admist the noise. The reality is HTS is a legitimate community that often suffers from a poor media presence. Sadly, polticians that represent the community it exists in often fail to treasure its existence. But then alternative interests govern their attention. An education to all in the community.
[quote][p][bold]Europeanist64[/bold] wrote: Parents have a lot of choice in Wyre forest, as I found when "shopping" (ugh!) for my own children. In cases where there is adequate choice, and some people want to try and make limited finances spent on a venture that isn't needed, then it is up to Cllr. Oborski and any politicians of any political colour to step in and ensure the whistle is blown.[/p][/quote]Whistles are entitled to be blown, but resonance should be sort admist the noise. The reality is HTS is a legitimate community that often suffers from a poor media presence. Sadly, polticians that represent the community it exists in often fail to treasure its existence. But then alternative interests govern their attention. An education to all in the community. DOEPUBLIC
  • Score: 1

12:29pm Mon 3 Mar 14

CBofBewdley says...

"An education to all the community" if only. On the face of it it looks as though, whilst taking fees from parents, this school racked up £1.3 million worth of debts only to be bailed out when it achieved free school status.

If this is correct - and I welcome the proper explanation behind this. As a parent with children at other schools in the area (those that were hit by the cancellation of the BSF Programme) tell me exactly how this school benefits the education of most children in this area? I hope if an analysis of the per pupil funding at this school is done it doesn't show that pupils benefit from much higher funding than the rest of the children at schools in the area.

Wouldn't this money have been far better spent on the existing schools thereby ensuring that everyone had the benefit?
"An education to all the community" if only. On the face of it it looks as though, whilst taking fees from parents, this school racked up £1.3 million worth of debts only to be bailed out when it achieved free school status. If this is correct - and I welcome the proper explanation behind this. As a parent with children at other schools in the area (those that were hit by the cancellation of the BSF Programme) tell me exactly how this school benefits the education of most children in this area? I hope if an analysis of the per pupil funding at this school is done it doesn't show that pupils benefit from much higher funding than the rest of the children at schools in the area. Wouldn't this money have been far better spent on the existing schools thereby ensuring that everyone had the benefit? CBofBewdley
  • Score: 4

3:09pm Mon 3 Mar 14

Stephen Brown says...

CBofBewdley says "Wouldn't this money have been far better spent on the existing schools thereby ensuring that everyone had the benefit?"

EXACTLY!

The fact that HTS will receive state money and become a 'free school' is not down to a need in the area, has nothing to do with choice or demand (except from a particular cohort), or any other smokescreen reasons put forward by its champions - it is down to the fact that Govt policy allows it and HTS have taken advantage of this because Gove & Co want to break up the state education system and privatise their way through education based on some fanciful notion of a past that never worked anyway.

When it all goes wrong, taxpayers will be left to foot the bill - already are in fact as Gove's Department's spending is out of control and lacks due diligence.
CBofBewdley says "Wouldn't this money have been far better spent on the existing schools thereby ensuring that everyone had the benefit?" EXACTLY! The fact that HTS will receive state money and become a 'free school' is not down to a need in the area, has nothing to do with choice or demand (except from a particular cohort), or any other smokescreen reasons put forward by its champions - it is down to the fact that Govt policy allows it and HTS have taken advantage of this because Gove & Co want to break up the state education system and privatise their way through education based on some fanciful notion of a past that never worked anyway. When it all goes wrong, taxpayers will be left to foot the bill - already are in fact as Gove's Department's spending is out of control and lacks due diligence. Stephen Brown
  • Score: 10

10:32pm Mon 3 Mar 14

DOEPUBLIC says...

CBofBewdley wrote:
"An education to all the community" if only. On the face of it it looks as though, whilst taking fees from parents, this school racked up £1.3 million worth of debts only to be bailed out when it achieved free school status.

If this is correct - and I welcome the proper explanation behind this. As a parent with children at other schools in the area (those that were hit by the cancellation of the BSF Programme) tell me exactly how this school benefits the education of most children in this area? I hope if an analysis of the per pupil funding at this school is done it doesn't show that pupils benefit from much higher funding than the rest of the children at schools in the area.

Wouldn't this money have been far better spent on the existing schools thereby ensuring that everyone had the benefit?
Clearly you choose to change the context of my sentence that originally was applied to politicians. Note ”Sadly, polticians that represent the community it exists in often fail to treasure its existence. But then alternative interests govern their attention. An education to all in the community."
Yes, all schools should have the opportunity but unfortunately "The reality is that education functions appropriately when parent, teachers and students work together. In this case the elephant in the room is the political will not to accept smaller class sizes of 20 (note the requests of teacher's professional associations) and myopia as to the quality that the National Curriculum model of herding delivers. Does any other school provide http://www.ibo.org/, In addition, the deception that all parents actually have a choice of school. Most actually have a preference rejected, as the choice is made for them by the criteria of assessment." The clear point being that the children in our community, whichever school they attend, will learn from the way adults use their authority to make decisions for them.
[quote][p][bold]CBofBewdley[/bold] wrote: "An education to all the community" if only. On the face of it it looks as though, whilst taking fees from parents, this school racked up £1.3 million worth of debts only to be bailed out when it achieved free school status. If this is correct - and I welcome the proper explanation behind this. As a parent with children at other schools in the area (those that were hit by the cancellation of the BSF Programme) tell me exactly how this school benefits the education of most children in this area? I hope if an analysis of the per pupil funding at this school is done it doesn't show that pupils benefit from much higher funding than the rest of the children at schools in the area. Wouldn't this money have been far better spent on the existing schools thereby ensuring that everyone had the benefit?[/p][/quote]Clearly you choose to change the context of my sentence that originally was applied to politicians. Note ”Sadly, polticians that represent the community it exists in often fail to treasure its existence. But then alternative interests govern their attention. An education to all in the community." Yes, all schools should have the opportunity but unfortunately "The reality is that education functions appropriately when parent, teachers and students work together. In this case the elephant in the room is the political will not to accept smaller class sizes of 20 (note the requests of teacher's professional associations) and myopia as to the quality that the National Curriculum model of herding delivers. Does any other school provide http://www.ibo.org/, In addition, the deception that all parents actually have a choice of school. Most actually have a preference rejected, as the choice is made for them by the criteria of assessment." The clear point being that the children in our community, whichever school they attend, will learn from the way adults use their authority to make decisions for them. DOEPUBLIC
  • Score: 0

6:39am Tue 4 Mar 14

CBofBewdley says...

So will HTS continue with low class sizes when a state funded school? Yes that's great then for the children who attend that school - only a very small percentage of Wyre Forest Children.

Surely the fact that this school exists and is being funded to the tune it is only serves to lessen the funding to other schools and make it harder to reduce class sizes overall.

I ask again how HTS will benefit the children of the area as a whole?
I also ask again how the funding this school receives per pupil will compare to the other schools in the area - all Wyre a Forest parents deserve to know this.
So will HTS continue with low class sizes when a state funded school? Yes that's great then for the children who attend that school - only a very small percentage of Wyre Forest Children. Surely the fact that this school exists and is being funded to the tune it is only serves to lessen the funding to other schools and make it harder to reduce class sizes overall. I ask again how HTS will benefit the children of the area as a whole? I also ask again how the funding this school receives per pupil will compare to the other schools in the area - all Wyre a Forest parents deserve to know this. CBofBewdley
  • Score: 6

11:39am Tue 4 Mar 14

swilder says...

Pupils in state funded education are funded per head, each county receives differing amounts per child (Worcestershire is amongst the lowest in the country -an issue for another day) but each child within that county receives the same amount of funding; this does not reduce depending on how many children there are. Therefore per head funding will not be reduced in other schools due to a new school being funded. Capital investment in new schools is from a separate budget allocation, funding the purchase of HTS buildings will undoubtedly be cheaper than a new build - note the £10 million on the new council building (if only our children all had such nice new buildings in which to learn). HTS have obviously had their spending projections accepted as part of their free school application, so I would suggest the most pertinent question would be how HTS will be able to provide an education which includes 2 additional languages from Reception and 23 per class (maximum class size under the new free school status) when other schools take up to 30 and don't do languages until older. Why shouldn't all schools provide this for each child in our county?
And as for the comment that this school will only benefit a small number of children in our community, being non selective it will benefit the children who meet the usual admission criteria, ie catchment area. You could say any school will only benefit the number of children who are admitted!
Pupils in state funded education are funded per head, each county receives differing amounts per child (Worcestershire is amongst the lowest in the country -an issue for another day) but each child within that county receives the same amount of funding; this does not reduce depending on how many children there are. Therefore per head funding will not be reduced in other schools due to a new school being funded. Capital investment in new schools is from a separate budget allocation, funding the purchase of HTS buildings will undoubtedly be cheaper than a new build - note the £10 million on the new council building (if only our children all had such nice new buildings in which to learn). HTS have obviously had their spending projections accepted as part of their free school application, so I would suggest the most pertinent question would be how HTS will be able to provide an education which includes 2 additional languages from Reception and 23 per class (maximum class size under the new free school status) when other schools take up to 30 and don't do languages until older. Why shouldn't all schools provide this for each child in our county? And as for the comment that this school will only benefit a small number of children in our community, being non selective it will benefit the children who meet the usual admission criteria, ie catchment area. You could say any school will only benefit the number of children who are admitted! swilder
  • Score: -2

12:32pm Tue 4 Mar 14

WolverleyLady says...

The school will be subject to the same admissions policy as all LA schools in the area. There is no selection allowed in the Free School policies. This school will therefore benefit the local area as much as any other school does.

I do not see how anyone can make decisions on value for money when they are not aware of the amounts being discussed? I imagine that it is significantly cheaper than a capital grant for a new school build? I think this may be more to do with Cllr Oborski chasing votes as well as her involvement with local schools, protecting her specific interests rather than looking at the wider picture?

No-one has mentioned the benefit of a through school either? I see this as an exciting movement to help children truly gain the best from their school without the unsettling times of transition and moving school. I think that this will be eagerly watched to see what benefits it brings for the children. And yes, before you ask my son is at the school; he is in his first year and I certainly couldn't have entertained the idea had it continued as a fee paying school - we are not all Land Rover driving toffs from country mansion as people seem to like to paint us. I just about manage to make ends meet from one month to the next and I am hoping that this will offer us the opportunity for a slightly different education experience, along with many other local families.

It is right to question why other schools do not teach languages from an early age when the children are most receptive, and why they cannot fund smaller class sizes. These are issues for Politicians and decision makers. I for one think that all children should have access to these and every other educational tool that exists to forward their learning, however the answer is not to lay blame at schools that want to try and do something different and move away from a system that is struggling.
The school will be subject to the same admissions policy as all LA schools in the area. There is no selection allowed in the Free School policies. This school will therefore benefit the local area as much as any other school does. I do not see how anyone can make decisions on value for money when they are not aware of the amounts being discussed? I imagine that it is significantly cheaper than a capital grant for a new school build? I think this may be more to do with Cllr Oborski chasing votes as well as her involvement with local schools, protecting her specific interests rather than looking at the wider picture? No-one has mentioned the benefit of a through school either? I see this as an exciting movement to help children truly gain the best from their school without the unsettling times of transition and moving school. I think that this will be eagerly watched to see what benefits it brings for the children. And yes, before you ask my son is at the school; he is in his first year and I certainly couldn't have entertained the idea had it continued as a fee paying school - we are not all Land Rover driving toffs from country mansion as people seem to like to paint us. I just about manage to make ends meet from one month to the next and I am hoping that this will offer us the opportunity for a slightly different education experience, along with many other local families. It is right to question why other schools do not teach languages from an early age when the children are most receptive, and why they cannot fund smaller class sizes. These are issues for Politicians and decision makers. I for one think that all children should have access to these and every other educational tool that exists to forward their learning, however the answer is not to lay blame at schools that want to try and do something different and move away from a system that is struggling. WolverleyLady
  • Score: -4

12:38pm Tue 4 Mar 14

Shibdrift says...

DOEPUBLIC wrote:
But Cllr Oborski said: “All the details should have been made public in order for a fair discussion to have taken place.” I look forward to this policy being adopted by WCC and WFDC as a whole. Bring on the open and fair discussions about our community. It will clearly contrast with the present cynical political charade conducted in the media. It is clear that politicians pick and choose when clarity and transparency is required. Not everybody is fooled by institutional myopia.
Absolutely correct.

Doubtful whether there has ever been a "fair discussion" from this lot of dictators!
[quote][p][bold]DOEPUBLIC[/bold] wrote: But Cllr Oborski said: “All the details should have been made public in order for a fair discussion to have taken place.” I look forward to this policy being adopted by WCC and WFDC as a whole. Bring on the open and fair discussions about our community. It will clearly contrast with the present cynical political charade conducted in the media. It is clear that politicians pick and choose when clarity and transparency is required. Not everybody is fooled by institutional myopia.[/p][/quote]Absolutely correct. Doubtful whether there has ever been a "fair discussion" from this lot of dictators! Shibdrift
  • Score: 0

12:48pm Tue 4 Mar 14

CBofBewdley says...

So Wolverley Lady I presume from your name that your child wouldn't have a hope of getting into this school anyway if you were applying now so any of your neighbours who want to follow suit in a couple of years time will be turned away. I presume if not selective then the school will take from a very restricted area in Kidderminster so those of us in surrounding areas need not apply. I wonder if you would be ringing the praises of the school if, when free turned you away?

I have no complaints about the education that my children have received from the local state schools having achieved good A' levels and in or heading for further education. That is in spite of the fact that they didn't learn two languages in reception. It would be nice if class sizes were smaller and I am sure that funding has a big part to play in this which is why I find it strange that free schools are able to work around this. Or will this be as, is the expectation that private companies will play a part in this.

I don't think there can be much argument that funding another school in an area where there are plenty of places available is lowering the "pot" to give to other schools can there? This may not be on an area basis as it is my understanding that free schools are funded directly by the DofE. They also don't have to follow the National Curriculum and teachers don't have to be trained in the profession of teaching. That would certainly be a big concern to me if I was considering this school for my kids - in addition to the missing £1.3 million of course.
So Wolverley Lady I presume from your name that your child wouldn't have a hope of getting into this school anyway if you were applying now so any of your neighbours who want to follow suit in a couple of years time will be turned away. I presume if not selective then the school will take from a very restricted area in Kidderminster so those of us in surrounding areas need not apply. I wonder if you would be ringing the praises of the school if, when free turned you away? I have no complaints about the education that my children have received from the local state schools having achieved good A' levels and in or heading for further education. That is in spite of the fact that they didn't learn two languages in reception. It would be nice if class sizes were smaller and I am sure that funding has a big part to play in this which is why I find it strange that free schools are able to work around this. Or will this be as, is the expectation that private companies will play a part in this. I don't think there can be much argument that funding another school in an area where there are plenty of places available is lowering the "pot" to give to other schools can there? This may not be on an area basis as it is my understanding that free schools are funded directly by the DofE. They also don't have to follow the National Curriculum and teachers don't have to be trained in the profession of teaching. That would certainly be a big concern to me if I was considering this school for my kids - in addition to the missing £1.3 million of course. CBofBewdley
  • Score: 5

1:29pm Tue 4 Mar 14

WolverleyLady says...

CB - you are right I may well have not got a place under it's new admissions for September but that is the same for every other school. If you live closer you have a greater chance, you can only apply and see. It would not affect my judgement of the school, that is the admissions policy of the LA.

I personally don't think that following the national curriculum is crucial to success, in fact if from my experience it can be extremely limiting. If it was a perfect system then we would be much more competitive with education systems across the world. As for the issue of employing non qualified staff, I trust the leadership team to employ the right people for the job. It would be of no benefit to them to employ people that couldn't enthuse the children or get results, after all we live in a results driven world and I suspect the eyes will be watching the school even more closely over the next few years. I had several awful teachers when I was at school and the QTS qualification does not automatically make someone a great teacher!
CB - you are right I may well have not got a place under it's new admissions for September but that is the same for every other school. If you live closer you have a greater chance, you can only apply and see. It would not affect my judgement of the school, that is the admissions policy of the LA. I personally don't think that following the national curriculum is crucial to success, in fact if from my experience it can be extremely limiting. If it was a perfect system then we would be much more competitive with education systems across the world. As for the issue of employing non qualified staff, I trust the leadership team to employ the right people for the job. It would be of no benefit to them to employ people that couldn't enthuse the children or get results, after all we live in a results driven world and I suspect the eyes will be watching the school even more closely over the next few years. I had several awful teachers when I was at school and the QTS qualification does not automatically make someone a great teacher! WolverleyLady
  • Score: -3

2:27pm Tue 4 Mar 14

DOEPUBLIC says...

CBofBewdley wrote:
So will HTS continue with low class sizes when a state funded school? Yes that's great then for the children who attend that school - only a very small percentage of Wyre Forest Children.

Surely the fact that this school exists and is being funded to the tune it is only serves to lessen the funding to other schools and make it harder to reduce class sizes overall.

I ask again how HTS will benefit the children of the area as a whole?
I also ask again how the funding this school receives per pupil will compare to the other schools in the area - all Wyre a Forest parents deserve to know this.
Sadly, you miss the tone and content of my response. The provision at HTS differs from other schools. Surely, the campaign should be for all schools to have smaller classes and a varied curriculum, rather than belittle HTS.
Until now the parents of HTS have forfeited the funding allocated to their child. So actually the DfE of had more money to spend. Parents will now be accessing their entitlement.
[quote][p][bold]CBofBewdley[/bold] wrote: So will HTS continue with low class sizes when a state funded school? Yes that's great then for the children who attend that school - only a very small percentage of Wyre Forest Children. Surely the fact that this school exists and is being funded to the tune it is only serves to lessen the funding to other schools and make it harder to reduce class sizes overall. I ask again how HTS will benefit the children of the area as a whole? I also ask again how the funding this school receives per pupil will compare to the other schools in the area - all Wyre a Forest parents deserve to know this.[/p][/quote]Sadly, you miss the tone and content of my response. The provision at HTS differs from other schools. Surely, the campaign should be for all schools to have smaller classes and a varied curriculum, rather than belittle HTS. Until now the parents of HTS have forfeited the funding allocated to their child. So actually the DfE of had more money to spend. Parents will now be accessing their entitlement. DOEPUBLIC
  • Score: -1

4:41pm Tue 4 Mar 14

CBofBewdley says...

DOEPUBLIC wrote:
CBofBewdley wrote:
So will HTS continue with low class sizes when a state funded school? Yes that's great then for the children who attend that school - only a very small percentage of Wyre Forest Children.

Surely the fact that this school exists and is being funded to the tune it is only serves to lessen the funding to other schools and make it harder to reduce class sizes overall.

I ask again how HTS will benefit the children of the area as a whole?
I also ask again how the funding this school receives per pupil will compare to the other schools in the area - all Wyre a Forest parents deserve to know this.
Sadly, you miss the tone and content of my response. The provision at HTS differs from other schools. Surely, the campaign should be for all schools to have smaller classes and a varied curriculum, rather than belittle HTS.
Until now the parents of HTS have forfeited the funding allocated to their child. So actually the DfE of had more money to spend. Parents will now be accessing their entitlement.
I haven't missed the tone or the content but am struggling to understand how you can believe that a free school in our area will do anything to improve the general education if all.

Of course it would be lovely wouldn't it if all schools could offer classes of 20 or below. Just on rough calculations this would equate to probably an extra 10 or more teachers for each high school in the area. Even if you assumed the cuts have not happened this could not be achieved.

This is precisely why the situation is unfair - so a very small number of children can have the benefit of smaller class sizes whilst the other local schools cope with the lot they have. So how will HTS be able to achieve this on the current levels of funding if they match the other schools.

Arguments over the capital costs are irrelevant as a new school would not have been built in the area as the numbers simply do not justify the expense.

If you have children in the school already then you are in the situation of being able to pay for a private education for your children and have chosen to do so. From next year the Taxpayer will pick up the tab to continue the funding. Value for money for the area? I really doubt it

I can only repeat again this school will do nothing to up the education of all and the fact that it is having a knock on effect to the funding of other school just infuriates me.
[quote][p][bold]DOEPUBLIC[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]CBofBewdley[/bold] wrote: So will HTS continue with low class sizes when a state funded school? Yes that's great then for the children who attend that school - only a very small percentage of Wyre Forest Children. Surely the fact that this school exists and is being funded to the tune it is only serves to lessen the funding to other schools and make it harder to reduce class sizes overall. I ask again how HTS will benefit the children of the area as a whole? I also ask again how the funding this school receives per pupil will compare to the other schools in the area - all Wyre a Forest parents deserve to know this.[/p][/quote]Sadly, you miss the tone and content of my response. The provision at HTS differs from other schools. Surely, the campaign should be for all schools to have smaller classes and a varied curriculum, rather than belittle HTS. Until now the parents of HTS have forfeited the funding allocated to their child. So actually the DfE of had more money to spend. Parents will now be accessing their entitlement.[/p][/quote]I haven't missed the tone or the content but am struggling to understand how you can believe that a free school in our area will do anything to improve the general education if all. Of course it would be lovely wouldn't it if all schools could offer classes of 20 or below. Just on rough calculations this would equate to probably an extra 10 or more teachers for each high school in the area. Even if you assumed the cuts have not happened this could not be achieved. This is precisely why the situation is unfair - so a very small number of children can have the benefit of smaller class sizes whilst the other local schools cope with the lot they have. So how will HTS be able to achieve this on the current levels of funding if they match the other schools. Arguments over the capital costs are irrelevant as a new school would not have been built in the area as the numbers simply do not justify the expense. If you have children in the school already then you are in the situation of being able to pay for a private education for your children and have chosen to do so. From next year the Taxpayer will pick up the tab to continue the funding. Value for money for the area? I really doubt it I can only repeat again this school will do nothing to up the education of all and the fact that it is having a knock on effect to the funding of other school just infuriates me. CBofBewdley
  • Score: 7

6:14pm Tue 4 Mar 14

SOS lad says...

1.3 million on a school that catered for priviladge kids whose parents could afford a private education, I'm sorry but they should charge more or close, why should my children and others be educated in portakabins, it seems that these schools are quick enough to jump ship and expect the tax payer to bail them out. I think Worcesterhire Education dept should get there priorities right.
1.3 million on a school that catered for priviladge kids whose parents could afford a private education, I'm sorry but they should charge more or close, why should my children and others be educated in portakabins, it seems that these schools are quick enough to jump ship and expect the tax payer to bail them out. I think Worcesterhire Education dept should get there priorities right. SOS lad
  • Score: 6

6:49pm Tue 4 Mar 14

Jerome K says...

Always good to return to this evergreen issue. I find it highly amusing that Wolverley Lady is pleading poverty & yet can afford the enormouse fees that it costs to send her child to private school. If her child is in year one she stands to save £117 000 over their school life if the fees are £9000 which i think they are. The breathtaking lack of self awareness shown by these people does more than infuriate me.

So aghast was I at this highly offensive plea of poverty (did you know that UK is only country in G8 where the Red Cross is distributing food to food banks?) I decided to Google WolverleyLady. I had to chuckle when the only link I got was to her complaining that her countryside Sunday tranquility was being disturbed by the distant noise of motorbikes.
Which makes her comment "we are not all Land Rover driving toffs from country mansion as people seem to like to paint us" absolutely priceless. Is there an award for lack of self awareness? I think we have a winner.
Always good to return to this evergreen issue. I find it highly amusing that Wolverley Lady is pleading poverty & yet can afford the enormouse fees that it costs to send her child to private school. If her child is in year one she stands to save £117 000 over their school life if the fees are £9000 which i think they are. The breathtaking lack of self awareness shown by these people does more than infuriate me. So aghast was I at this highly offensive plea of poverty (did you know that UK is only country in G8 where the Red Cross is distributing food to food banks?) I decided to Google WolverleyLady. I had to chuckle when the only link I got was to her complaining that her countryside Sunday tranquility was being disturbed by the distant noise of motorbikes. Which makes her comment "we are not all Land Rover driving toffs from country mansion as people seem to like to paint us" absolutely priceless. Is there an award for lack of self awareness? I think we have a winner. Jerome K
  • Score: 4

7:33pm Tue 4 Mar 14

DOEPUBLIC says...

CBofBewdley wrote:
DOEPUBLIC wrote:
CBofBewdley wrote:
So will HTS continue with low class sizes when a state funded school? Yes that's great then for the children who attend that school - only a very small percentage of Wyre Forest Children.

Surely the fact that this school exists and is being funded to the tune it is only serves to lessen the funding to other schools and make it harder to reduce class sizes overall.

I ask again how HTS will benefit the children of the area as a whole?
I also ask again how the funding this school receives per pupil will compare to the other schools in the area - all Wyre a Forest parents deserve to know this.
Sadly, you miss the tone and content of my response. The provision at HTS differs from other schools. Surely, the campaign should be for all schools to have smaller classes and a varied curriculum, rather than belittle HTS.
Until now the parents of HTS have forfeited the funding allocated to their child. So actually the DfE of had more money to spend. Parents will now be accessing their entitlement.
I haven't missed the tone or the content but am struggling to understand how you can believe that a free school in our area will do anything to improve the general education if all.

Of course it would be lovely wouldn't it if all schools could offer classes of 20 or below. Just on rough calculations this would equate to probably an extra 10 or more teachers for each high school in the area. Even if you assumed the cuts have not happened this could not be achieved.

This is precisely why the situation is unfair - so a very small number of children can have the benefit of smaller class sizes whilst the other local schools cope with the lot they have. So how will HTS be able to achieve this on the current levels of funding if they match the other schools.

Arguments over the capital costs are irrelevant as a new school would not have been built in the area as the numbers simply do not justify the expense.

If you have children in the school already then you are in the situation of being able to pay for a private education for your children and have chosen to do so. From next year the Taxpayer will pick up the tab to continue the funding. Value for money for the area? I really doubt it

I can only repeat again this school will do nothing to up the education of all and the fact that it is having a knock on effect to the funding of other school just infuriates me.
It is noted the ContinU trust that was set up to facilitate delivery of an alternative curriculum to a chosen group of children identified and is not open to access by parental choice, yet accepted without complaint. Where there is political will there is a way. As you identify it would cost us the public for the same provision for all, so lets stop this 'austerity' deception and give the communities children what they deserve an education that fits their needs rather than that of the politicians. Speaking as a proud payer of my dues without any children.
[quote][p][bold]CBofBewdley[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]DOEPUBLIC[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]CBofBewdley[/bold] wrote: So will HTS continue with low class sizes when a state funded school? Yes that's great then for the children who attend that school - only a very small percentage of Wyre Forest Children. Surely the fact that this school exists and is being funded to the tune it is only serves to lessen the funding to other schools and make it harder to reduce class sizes overall. I ask again how HTS will benefit the children of the area as a whole? I also ask again how the funding this school receives per pupil will compare to the other schools in the area - all Wyre a Forest parents deserve to know this.[/p][/quote]Sadly, you miss the tone and content of my response. The provision at HTS differs from other schools. Surely, the campaign should be for all schools to have smaller classes and a varied curriculum, rather than belittle HTS. Until now the parents of HTS have forfeited the funding allocated to their child. So actually the DfE of had more money to spend. Parents will now be accessing their entitlement.[/p][/quote]I haven't missed the tone or the content but am struggling to understand how you can believe that a free school in our area will do anything to improve the general education if all. Of course it would be lovely wouldn't it if all schools could offer classes of 20 or below. Just on rough calculations this would equate to probably an extra 10 or more teachers for each high school in the area. Even if you assumed the cuts have not happened this could not be achieved. This is precisely why the situation is unfair - so a very small number of children can have the benefit of smaller class sizes whilst the other local schools cope with the lot they have. So how will HTS be able to achieve this on the current levels of funding if they match the other schools. Arguments over the capital costs are irrelevant as a new school would not have been built in the area as the numbers simply do not justify the expense. If you have children in the school already then you are in the situation of being able to pay for a private education for your children and have chosen to do so. From next year the Taxpayer will pick up the tab to continue the funding. Value for money for the area? I really doubt it I can only repeat again this school will do nothing to up the education of all and the fact that it is having a knock on effect to the funding of other school just infuriates me.[/p][/quote]It is noted the ContinU trust that was set up to facilitate delivery of an alternative curriculum to a chosen group of children identified and is not open to access by parental choice, yet accepted without complaint. Where there is political will there is a way. As you identify it would cost us the public for the same provision for all, so lets stop this 'austerity' deception and give the communities children what they deserve an education that fits their needs rather than that of the politicians. Speaking as a proud payer of my dues without any children. DOEPUBLIC
  • Score: 2

Comments are closed on this article.

click2find

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree