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Call for Damson Wood School to not be turned into an academy

Parents of children attending failing Damson Wood Nursery and Infant School in Solihull are campaigning for it not to be turned into an academy.

Parents of children attending a failing infant school in Solihull are campaigning for it not to be turned into an academy.

Instead, parents have signed a petition for Damson Wood Nursery and Infant School to be merged with neighbouring Coppice Junior School.

The call has also been backed by the chairman of governors at Coppice Junior School, Russell Bryant, who has written to the parliamentary under-secretary for schools, Lord Nash, to support the merger. Damson Wood Nursery and Infant School, which had previously been rated outstanding by Ofsted, was placed under special measures last year.

Inspectors blamed ‘failures in senior leadership and governance’.

When a school is placed in special measures, the preferred option is to turn it into an academy – and council bosses have assured parents this week that a full consultation will be carried out.

But parents have raised concerns over the proposed ‘academisation.’

One parent, whose son attends Damson Wood School, said: “We feel the decisions being made are done on the basis of what is right for the local education authority, and this is not acceptable.”

Councillor Joe Tildesley, cabinet member for education, skills and lifelong learning, said: “As Damson Wood Nursery & Infant School is currently in special measures it is expected, by the Department of Education, to now become a sponsored academy.

“There are still several stages to be worked through during which meaningful consultation will be undertaken with all affected parties.”

 

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