Unfortunately an early version of this article went out to subscribers. This is the final article re-circulated.
Government has announced the six grammar schools offered £14.3 million funding from the second round of the Government Grammar School Expansion Fund, out of the 25 that applied. None of the eight Kent and two Medway grammar schools which applied were successful. The successful schools were: King Edward VI Handsworth School, Birmingham; Ribston Hall High School, Gloucestershire; Haberdashers’ Adams and Newport Girls’ High School Academy, both Telford and Wrekin; Altrincham Grammar School for Girls; and Stretford Grammar School, both in Trafford.
The Kent grammar schools which applied were: Barton Court, Canterbury and Queen Elizabeth’s, Faversham, both bidding for a new Annexe in Herne Bay/Whitstable; Cranbrook; Highsted, Sittingbourne; Highworth, Ashford; Skinners, Tunbridge Wells; and Wilmington Boys and Wilmington Girls, jointly, budding for a new Sixth Form complex. Also Chatham (previously called Chatham Grammar School for Girls) and Fort Pitt Grammar Schools in Medway.
A government document setting out details of the Selective Schools Expansion Fund (SSEF) for 2019 applicants, the current scheme, sets out the criteria by which proposals are judged as follows:
The purpose of the Selective Schools Expansion Fund (SSEF) is to support the expansion of selective schools where:
• there is a need for additional places, both in terms of a shortfall of secondary places in the local area and a demand from parents for more selective places; and
• they have ambitious but deliverable plans for increasing access for disadvantaged pupils (by which we mean pupils eligible for the pupil premium), and
• they have plans to work with other local schools to increase access for disadvantaged pupils and to raise attainment.
In a previous article I look at the 2018 Round and the eight unsuccessful 2018 bidders, some of whom have reapplied for 2019. These were: Skinners’, Cranbrook, Highworth, Tunbridge Wells Boys, Wilmington Boys and Girls (jointly), all from Kent and Rainham Mark in Medway.
The article is set in the context of looking at Pupil Premium and grammar schools. You will find the 2019 Consultation document for Highsted here, although to my untutored eye it looks a little thin. Others are not readily available, but I am happy to be directed to them.
Where a bid proposes to expand a school on another (satellite) site, you must be satisfied that the proposal is a genuine expansion and does not constitute a new school.
You must consider the information provided in the appropriate section of the application form to determine the overall level of integration between the two sites.
There is no easy “checklist” for this but the greater the integration the lower the risk. Points to consider are:
The reasons for the expansion
• What is the rationale for this approach and this particular site?
Admission and curriculum arrangements
• How will the new site be used (e.g. which age groups/pupils will it serve)?
• Are any changes to admission arrangements necessary?
• Will there be movement of pupils between sites?
Governance and administration
• How will whole school activities be managed?
• Will staff be employed on contracts to work on both sites? How frequently will they do so?
• What governance, leadership and management arrangements will be put in place to oversee the new site
(e.g. will the new site be governed by the same governing body/academy trust board and the same school leadership team)?
Physical characteristics of the school
• How will facilities across the two sites be used (e.g. sharing of the facilities and resources available at the two sites, such as playing fields)?
• Is the new site in an area that is easily accessible to the community that the current school serves?
Source: Kent Educational advice
Selective School Expansion Fund: Kent Decisions (2)