Plans for a ‘Mossbourne two’ in Hackney

A new secondary school set to be built in Hackney by 2014 will be a “Mossbourne two”, if new proposals are approved.

The Learning Trust announced today (Friday, September 30) that it has chosen the Mossbourne Academy, in Downs Park Road, to head the project after it reviewed bids by schools keen to expand their provision in the borough.

Executive principal Sir Michael Wilshaw will work with Hackney Council and the Learning Trust to develop proposals for the new academy, which will be opened on the site of the soon-to-be relocated Cardinal Pole lower school, in Victoria Park Road.

Education minister Michael Gove will decide whether to give the plans the go-ahead. He has publicly praised Sir Michael in the past for improving the academic achievements of children in his catchment area.

Sir Michael, who has previously said he hoped the new school would be a “Mossbourne two”, said: “We are very proud to have been asked to expand our model in Hackney.

“We have a good relationship with the council and the Learning Trust, and I want to ensure we work closely together to deliver this new provision for Hackney’s young people.”

Mayor of Hackney Jules Pipe said: “We are delighted to be working with Mossbourne to support the expansion of their academy.

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“They have demonstrated how effective their model is and how well pupils can do. I hope the secretary of state will agree to this proposal.”

But some Hackney residents and teachers are not happy that the new school will be an academy and they launched a campaign group this summer called Hackney Residents for Comprehensive Education (HRCE).

They believe academies are not as accountable as traditional schools, because they are sponsored by businesses rather than run by the local authority.

HRCE member Gary Coleman said he was not surprised there are plans for another Mossbourne, but added: “Our campaign will continue and we will continue collecting signatures for a petition to save our state schools.”