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Can free schools really do better?
9:54am Wednesday 26th September 2012 in Opinion
DORSET’S first experience of the government’s “free schools” idea has not, so far, gone smoothly.
The people behind the Parkfield School scheme chose a Lansdowne office building as its location – only to be gazumped in their bid to buy it.
They insist their free secondary school will open next September.
Now, Poole councillor Tony Woodcock is gauging interest in the idea of a free junior school at the site of the former Fourways Day Centre on Constitution Hill.
We will see what obstacles this scheme might face, but at least the site seems more readily suited to education.
The challenge for any backers of this bid will be to prove that parents, businesses and community groups can get a school off the ground more efficiently than education bosses who have been running schools for decades.
The rest of us will be waiting to see whether free schools are a great idea or a gimmick.