By ANTHONY CARROLL
Friday, August 5, 2011
A pivotal funding agreement has been reached to transform Lowestoft’s biggest school into an academy status site – making it the most easterly type of its kind in England.
In September Kirkley High School will re-open its doors as the aptly named East Point Academy to become the first school in Waveney to break away from the auspices of Suffolk County Council.
As a boost to the academy’s backers’ plans to inspire young people in Lowestoft, the Department of Education has agreed to enter into a funding agreement with East Point Academy, which is being sponsored by the Academies Enterprise Trust (AET). The agreement secures the schools’ budget and staff.
When East Point Academy opens its doors in September it will have 1,200 students aged 11-16 on its roll who will all be given free new uniforms.
AET says its goal for the academy is to “inspire young people to make their best better” by offering “excellent education through the application of tried, tested and very successful school organisation and an outstanding curriculum”.
News of the funding arrangement was confirmed in a letter to AET by Lord Hill, the parliamentary under secretary of state for schools.
Lord Hill’s letter said: “AET’s main focus will be to build on the achievements of the predecessor school and to improve the quality of teaching.
“I hope the academy will provide its young people with opportunities to achieve their full potential in their chosen field of work, studying or training.”
The acting headteacher of East Point Academy, Liz Redpath, said: “This is fantastic news not just for the school but for the whole community.
“Our students have already been working closely with younger ones due to transfer to the East Point next month to ensure their move is as smooth as possible.
“We have just recruited 19 new staff and all staff are looking forward to a busy and exciting year ahead.”
Essex-based AET was formed in 2008 and East Point Academy will be its eighth academy, including Clacton Coastal Academy.
Waveney MP Peter Aldous said he was pleased the funding arrangement had been agreed paving the way for the academy’s creation.
He added: “It is excellent news that the East Point Academy will be opening in September.
“This announcement demonstrates the government’s commitment to providing funding for deprived areas.
“I look forward to meeting with those who will run the academy to discuss and support its opening.”