Search

Wapping High signs deal as Tower Hamlets’ first state-funded Free school

PUBLISHED: 17:33 30 July 2012

The new Wapping High School in Commercial Road

The new Wapping High School in Commercial Road

submitted

Funding to run the first Free secondary school in London’s East End has got the green light from Whitehall.

The Department for Education has signed a financial agreement to run the new Wapping High School, the first state-funded secondary to open in Tower Hamlets for 20 years.

The deal follows a long campaign by parents who felt isolated from local education facilities.

The school opens in September for youngsters from all backgrounds aged 11 to 16, with 41 families having accepted places so far, and is expected to meet its target of 60 pupils in the first term.

The first few starting in September have already spent a day at the school.

Head-teacher Paul Guénault revealed: “They enjoyed learning a Beatles song, launching rockets, creating their own robots and visiting the Bank of England.”

The new school was intended to serve parents in Wapping and Shadwell who feel cut off by The Highway—but ironically has not managed to find a suitable site in its heartland catchment area. Instead, it found a smart office block further north in Commercial Road.

The parents who set up the school achieved their goal without having to rely on a project management company.

Trust chairman Jon Cheyne explained: “We have a team with its own experience in education and project management, which had a clear vision of what it wanted the school to achieve.”

The school day will be extended for a diverse programme alongside the national curriculum, with pupils encouraged “to take responsibility for their own success.”

Their campaign was backed by Poplar & Limehouse MP Jim Fitzpatrick and personalities living in the area including actress Dame Helen Mirren.


If you value what this story gives you, please consider supporting the East London Advertiser. Click the link in the orange box below for details.

Become a supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years, through good times and bad, serving as your advocate and trusted source of local information. Our industry is facing testing times, which is why I’m asking for your support. Every single contribution will help us continue to produce award-winning local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Thank you.

Most Read

Most Read

Latest from the East London Advertiser