Although it’s been a long wait, there is still no sign of a free school application being approved for the Penn School site anytime soon.
Just before Easter the Department for Education (DfE) announced the outcome of the review of free school applications under the national Wave 12 process.
You will know from previous updates that the Penn School Working Group has been reporting for several months that three applications were made to the DfE naming the former Penn School site as the preferred location for a new free school.
As part of the recent announcement, and specifically in relation to the Penn School site, the DfE made the following statement:
“The Education Skills and Funding Agency confirms that as no school that names the site has been approved in this wave they will be considering their options. This may mean holding onto the Penn site as it is a good location for a school or disposing of the site for other development. While it is physically possible to build a secondary on the site, they believe it is more suited to an alternative provision or special school”.
Details of the timing of and criteria for the next wave of free school applications will be confirmed following the publication of the Government White Paper in response to the Schools that Work for Everyone consultation.
The Penn School Working Group will monitor developments and do whatever it can to achieve a positive outcome for the village. It will also continue to regularly report on progress to residents in Village Voice and on the P&TGRS website.
18th April, 2017