It's getting heated in the 'against' team for Bolingbroke Academy
By aloquifique | Wednesday, December 22, 2010, 23:03
Laura Brown has written on furzedown.net - a neighbouring Wandsworth ward forum - urging non supporters of the Bolingbroke Academy to sign her petition against the implementation of the new free school in the Northcote ward. How successful this can be remains to be seen, as plans for the new school are currently steaming ahead and public consultations are now all wrapped up.
The lobby against Bollingroke Academy. Picture taken from their Facebook page
Laura and her team believe that the Neighbourhood School Campaign is flawed because it is, as she says on her facebook page, "based on misleading statistics and unwillingness to engage with our exisiting Wandsworth state schools." Jon de Maria, who heads up the Neighbourhood Schools Campaign has argued his case profusely on this site, but still the unrest rumbles on. It may be that as the Council is about to embark on introducing a range of austerity measures when the new budget cuts get revealed, they are at the same time, going to be spending an apparent £13 million on acquiring the site for the new school from St Georges Hospital Trust. That's £13 million, plus conversion costs and annual running costs for a new school in one of the richest areas in the Borough.
Paul Maloney GMB Regional Officer representing school support staff in Wandsworth said "The bankers who had to be rescued with £850 billions of public funds have acquired a taste for using public money to fund their pet projects. More than 30 of them have gone public supporting the bankers "free" school in Battersea.
Chestnut Grove, based in Balham and the nearest secondary school to the Bolingbroke Academy, according to Laura is only a mile away from Northcote Road and is only filled with 1% of children from that catchment. The implication here is that parents don't even apply to Chestnut Grove, or indeed other local schools like Ernest Bevin and Burntwood.
Fio, on Furzedown.net went further in her opposition. 'The mix which a comprehensive school ought to be is jeopardised by the gerrymandering tactics of people giving in to greed, fear and a consequent desire to manipulate their children into isolation from the real world. This isn't good for anyone.'
So with a Conservative Coalition Government and a Tory run Council what hope have the opposition got? This is turning into a real David and Goliath battle.