Decision time looms for high schools

MANAGERS of Felixstowe's two high schools could miss out when it is decided who will run the town's new �32 million school.

Richard Cornwell

MANAGERS of Felixstowe's two high schools could miss out when it is decided who will run the town's new �32 million school.

Deben High and Orwell High launched the Felixstowe Learning Trust (FLT) and bid to run the school, set to open in 2013 when they are both due to close.

County councillors though are recommended to accept a bid from the Essex-based Academies Enterprise Trust (AET), who will run the new school as an academy, if government agrees.

Four bids were received for the school, to be built on the Orwell campus for 1,850 students aged 11 to 19.

Cabinet members will decide on Tuesday who succeeds after considering the bids plus two from the Diocese of St Edmundsbury and Ipswich, proposing either a voluntary aided school or an academy.

Most Read

EC Harris Consultancy evaluated the proposals, deciding there were just five points between them after looking at a range of factors.

FLT showed good local knowledge, some excellent proposals for 14-19 years' education, and strength in the area of extended schools, but lacked detail about how some of its approaches would work in practice and little evidence of how trust partners would contribute skills and expertise.

“The AET proposal showed a slightly more radical approach and was able to clearly define an approach to raising standards and to 14-19 issues,” said Lindsay Martin, Building Schools for the Future programme director.

“The well-established model that they propose, along with excellent references and specific examples of where it has worked elsewhere, resulted in the bid scoring highly in the areas of standards, extended schools and 14-19.”

There was concern the diocesan bid would create a school with religious character in a town with only one school available.