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Free school hopes for big launch next year
9:40am Wednesday 19th September 2012 in News
EDUCATION bosses have said they are “optimistic” Bournemouth and Poole’s first free school will be ready to start teaching pupils next September.
Scores of parents were left disappointed when Parkfield School announced in July that they would not be able to open this year, as originally intended.
Those involved in setting up the new school blamed the Department for Education for selecting a problematic site in Homelife House at the Lansdowne and then mishandling the negotiations to buy the office block, which ended with them being gazumped by another purchaser.
But they insisted they would go back to the drawing board to find a better site and achieve planning permission.
Parkfield has said on Twitter : “We continue to work hard behind the scenes to identify other suitable sites for the school.”
We continue to work hard behind the scenes to indentify other suitablesites for the school.— Parkfield School (@ParkfieldFree) August 15, 2012
Following enquiries from the Echo, they confirmed in an email: “We are still working closely with the Department for Education in reviewing options around a suitable site for the school.”
Nobody was able to confirm which sites are being looked at but a DfE spokesperson said: “We are optimistic that the Parkfield School will secure a site in time for it to open in September next year as planned.”
All children offered places to start this year have had their places held until 2013, and the admissions process will re-open in November for new applications. The teachers who have been offered jobs have also had their offers held over until 2013.