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Parents vow to fight plans to turn Dollis Hill primary school into an academy

PUBLISHED: 15:25 23 January 2013 | UPDATED: 15:26 23 January 2013

Gladstone Park Primary School received a negative Ofsted report (pic credit: Jonathan Goldberg)

Gladstone Park Primary School received a negative Ofsted report (pic credit: Jonathan Goldberg)

Jonathan Goldberg

Gladstone Park Primary could be forced into conversion following negative Ofsted report

»Parents and governors have vowed to fight a government decision to force a Willesden school to become an academy.

Gladstone Park Primary, in Sherrick Green Road, has been told it has “serious weaknesses” and will have academy status in a matter of weeks.

An Ofsted report in December said the school had difficulties of progress in key stages three, four and five.

Education secretary Michael Gove wants all “failing” schools to become academies outside local authority control, claiming that this offers them a better chance of improvement.

But parents say the progress shown by pupils from starting to leaving the school is among the highest in the borough and have put their faith in the current board of directors.

Dr Anne Kinderlerer, the chairman of governors, said: “We believe the school has the capacity to improve, but if we are to be forced into this, we want time to think about it and to have a say on who comes in.”

Alex Colas, who has an eight-year-old daughter at the school, said: “Being forced into this is not what we envisaged – we are trying to speak to relevant authorises to stop it. If there is no other option, we want to choose our own sponsor and choose someone who agrees with the school’s ethos.”

A Department for Education spokesman said: “We cannot just stand by when a school is judged inadequate – we need to make changes quickly. Academy status with the support of a strong sponsor is the best way of securing rapid and sustained improvement in schools like Gladstone Park.

“Academies have already turned around hundreds of struggling schools.”

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