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Yarmouth schools seek academy status

PUBLISHED: 10:28 28 June 2010 | UPDATED: 18:07 30 June 2010

Three Great Yarmouth-area schools are among dozens in East Anglia that have expressed an interest in joining the new wave of academies.

Martham Primary and Nursery, Alderman Swindell Infant and Flegg High at Martham have put their names forward to find out more.

Three Great Yarmouth-area schools are among dozens in East Anglia that have expressed an interest in joining the new wave of academies.

Martham Primary and Nursery, Alderman Swindell Infant and Flegg High at Martham have put their names forward to find out more.

Education secretary Michael Gove announced last month that all secondary, primary and special schools could apply for the status - with schools rated outstanding in their last Ofsted inspection put on a fast-track route.

The Department for Education (DfE) has so far refused to name the schools that expressed an interest.

Now the DfE has published a list of the 1,567 schools, including 828 outstanding schools, that have expressed an interest.

They include 15 in Norfolk (five outstanding, 10 others), 13 in Cambridgeshire (eight and five) and 25 in Suffolk (15 and 10).

It is not yet known how many of the schools are hoping to open as academies in September this year, or whether they are simply trying to find out more.

The local schools include:

NORFOLK

Outstanding - Martham Primary; Alderman Swindell Infant, Great Yarmouth; Sheringham Primary; Wymondham College; Reepham High

Others - Antingham and Southrepps Primary; Beeston Primary; Dereham Infant and Nursery; Flegg High, Martham; St Andrew's Primary, North Pickenham; Overstrand, The Belfry Primary; Redcastle Furze Primary, Thetford; Sheringham High; St Mary's Junior, Long Stratton; Thompson Primary

SUFFOLK

Outstanding - Hartismere High, Eye; Gunton Primary, Lowestoft

Others - Stradbroke College; The Denes High, Lowestoft.

There are currently two Norfolk academies - Open Academy at the former Heartsease High in Norwich and City Academy Norwich at the former Earlham High.

Four more are expected to open in September - Ormiston Victory Academy at Costessey High, Ormiston Venture Academy at Oriel High, Gorleston, One at The Park High, King's Lynn, and one in the buildings of Charles Burrell and Rosemary Musker high schools, Thetford.

The government said schools wishing to register an interest had until June 30 to do so if they wanted to open as an academy in time for the new academic year in September.

Lord Hill, junior schools minister, said: “I am delighted that so many schools have expressed an interest, and that over 900 outstanding schools are interested in becoming academies.

“Every school expressing an interest will have a named contact in the department, who can answer their questions and guide them through the process.

“At the same time, we expect schools to keep their governors, staff and parents updated on progress. This is a genuinely permissive policy, there is no pressure for any school to convert by September, and they can do so at any time, when they feel they are ready.

“We want schools to decide what's best for them, not politicians or bureaucrats.”

To see the names of every school, visit www.education.gov.uk/academies/schools-registering-interest.

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