Parents to protest over academy

FELIXSTOWE: Parents campaigning against the possibility of Felixstowe's new �32 million school being an academy will tomorrow be running a protest petition in the town centre.

FELIXSTOWE: Parents campaigning against the possibility of Felixstowe's new �32 million school being an academy will tomorrow be running a protest petition in the town centre.

They will be handing out more than 2,000 flyers urging people to write to secretary of state for children, schools and families Ed Balls, asking him to reject the academy plan, and explaining their concerns over the decision.

Members of Felixstowe Against an Academy School in the Town (FAAST) are organising the event.

The group is hoping to gain big support from the public to persuade Mr Balls to review the decision by the county council to turn the new school into an academy which would be run by the Academies Enterprise Trust (AET).

FAAST spokesman Pete Barnsley said: “This decision puts all the progress made by Felixstowe's schools in jeopardy.

“Our children's education and, therefore, the successful future of the town is under threat.

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“Teachers will be disillusioned. Many are not in favour of academies and the best teachers will find it easy to get other jobs and may leave.”

The parents wanted Felixstowe Learning Trust - a joint bid by Deben and Orwell High, which will close to make way for the new school - to run the new campus for 1,850 students aged 11 to 19 when it opens in 2013.

Mr Barnsley said Deben in particular had made excellent progress in the past year with exam results up 20pc.

County schools portfolio holder Graham Newman said in the vast majority of cases where AET had been involved the school had been “quite transformed”.

Should Felixstowe have an academy? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN, or e-mail eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk

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