Academy bid gets government go-ahead

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Mildenhall College’s bid to become an academy has been given primary approval from the Department of Education.

The school has launched a consultation period and if support is gained from parents, stake holders and the local community it will covert to an academy at the beginning of July.

Headteacher Susan Byles, said: “It’s a very exciting time for the school.

“We think we can make huge advancements and we can get some exciting opportunities for young people and young adults.”

By converting to an academy the school will gain freedom from local authority control and more choice over the delivery of the curriculum.

Academies receive the same level of funding per-pupil as authority run schools, however have more freedom over how it is spent.

Ms Byles said: “For Mildenhall it means we can move forward in the direction of our choosing and what suits the local community we are not being driven by the county council agenda.”

She said the ‘final straw’ was Suffolk County Council’s failure to apply for funding from the government’s school building scheme on their behalf.

The school is now exploring the possibility of becoming part of the proposed Mildenhall Hub and intends to apply for funding next year.

As it becomes an academy Mildenhall College plans to work with the Academy Transformation Trust (ATT), who will support it through the transformation and go on to offer some of the services previously supplied by Suffolk County Council.

Ms Byles said she hoped that by working with ATT the school would be able to increase its provision of further education and expand into adult education, to the benefit of the local community.

A public meeting to discuss the transformation will take place at the school’s Bury Road site at 6pm on April 16.

Those unable to attend can submit their opinions via E.thomas@AcademyTransformation.co.uk