What education minister found at Tower Hamlets' alternative to mainstream schooling
PUBLISHED: 10:00 27 September 2019 | UPDATED: 10:01 30 September 2019
An "alternative" school for youngsters excluded or outside mainstream Tower Hamlets education has had 85 per cent of its pupils getting GCSE in English and maths, a government minister has found.
Now Education Secretary Gavin Williamson wants to use the school's success as a benchmark across the country.
He took his cue visiting the London East Alternative Provision in Bethnal Green which helps pupils who haven't managed to stay in mainstream education "for whatever reason". The school has improved its GCSE high pass grades in maths alone from three per cent to 40pc in just three years.
Mr Williamson said: ""As education secretary, my ambition for pupils in alternative provision is no different to that for other children and that's why I've been very clear that we need to set our sights much higher for these pupils.
"I will continue meeting education leaders and visiting schools to see what 'great' looks like, so we can mirror it and make sure all children can reach their potential.
"Many of its youngsters eventually return to mainstream education and manage to fit in with their peers and be more self-confident.
Its headteacher John Bradshaw said: "We help tackle personal and social issues that underpin their inability to succeed in mainstream."
The school helps improve language and overcome anxiety as well as having academic goals. One ex-pupil has even been given a part-time job to help her university studies in criminology.