Charitable trust set to run £4m academy at former Townsend Primary site

RECOMMENDED: Townsend Primary School is set to be run by the Aspirations Academies Trust.

RECOMMENDED: Townsend Primary School is set to be run by the Aspirations Academies Trust.

First published in News by

A CHARITABLE trust which runs two schools in Oxfordshire looks set to run a new Townsend Primary school.

The Aspirations Academies Trust is being recommended to councillors as the best sponsor for a £4million academy.

It looks set to be chosen over an alternative bid which involved a Poole company.

Bournemouth council wants a new school on the site of the former Townsend Primary to take 60 reception pupils in September 2013.

No local schools or religious groups came forward to sponsor the proposed academy.

Neil Goddard, service director for community learning at the council, said: “The Aspirations Academies Trust’s proposal for the new primary school is exciting and clearly shows how they will work closely with the local community and provide excellent opportunities for local children, ensuring that they can reach their fullest potential.

“We were very impressed with their attitude and school ethos.”

The trust already runs the Banbury Academy secondary school and Dashwood Banbury Academy primary.

It looks set to win out over a partnership involving the Place Group, Bellvue Education and Poole-based School Business Services.

Strouden Park councillor Michael Weinhonig praised both bids but said his preference had been for the trust.

He said: “I personally am very excited by the opportunity that this proposal brings.”

He said the trust’s bid was “in line with a forward-looking council like Bournemouth”.

He said he had been impressed by the trust’s ethos in areas such as behaviour and individual development. “They were challenging young people to become better people themselves,” he said.

A £4.15million grant to refurbish and extend the existing Townsend buildings is already in place. Government policies say councils proposing new schools must first look at making them academies or free schools.

A report to Bournemouth council’s cabinet on Tuesday, November 20, will represent putting the trust’s name forward to education secretary Michael Gove, who will make the final decision.

After controversially closing the original Townsend School in 2008, Bournemouth experienced a baby boom which led to a lack of primary school places.

There had been hopes that the Bishop of Winchester Academy would sponsor the school, but its governors decided against the idea.

Comments (3)

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1:08pm Wed 14 Nov 12

John T says...

Strouden Park councillor Michael Weinhonig said the trust's bid was 'in line with a forward-looking Council like Bournemouth.'
Would that be the same Bournemouth Council who shut this j school just 4 years ago, when a 4 year old could have told them that the growing number of children in that age group would mean that more primary school places would be needed in that area in the near future?!
Strouden Park councillor Michael Weinhonig said the trust's bid was 'in line with a forward-looking Council like Bournemouth.' Would that be the same Bournemouth Council who shut this j school just 4 years ago, when a 4 year old could have told them that the growing number of children in that age group would mean that more primary school places would be needed in that area in the near future?! John T
  • Score: 0

5:59pm Wed 14 Nov 12

Yankee1 says...

The very same.

The ones who could not bother to read the figures and see the pupil bubble on the way.
The very same. The ones who could not bother to read the figures and see the pupil bubble on the way. Yankee1
  • Score: 0

11:43am Tue 20 Nov 12

ajj-dorset says...

What a bizarre state of affairs our education system has become?

Spend £4 million on a school then hand over control to an organisation which runs a secondary and a small primary schools over 100 miles away.
What a bizarre state of affairs our education system has become? Spend £4 million on a school then hand over control to an organisation which runs a secondary and a small primary schools over 100 miles away. ajj-dorset
  • Score: 0

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