Discovery School in Newcastle to close

The Discovery School in Newcastle is set to close after four years of opening.

Newcastle Council confirmed the Discovery School in Newcastle would close after the government pulled the plug on its funding when it failed an Ofsted inspection.

Earlier this month the school was accepting pupils on to its register for September and parents were only told on Tuesday it would shut on 31 August.

A spokesman said the closure would “be for the best” in the long term.

The school, which opened in 2014 and teaches a specialist science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) curriculum, had been funded directly from the government.

It has the capacity for 700 students but only has 218 on its roll.

The statement from the Discovery School reads:

‘Pupils, parents and staff have been informed of the decision and the school is working with the Department for Education, Newcastle City Council and other local authorities to ensure pupils are offered alternative places at other schools before the start of the new term.

The decision has been taken based on well-documented issues at the school including safeguarding problems, poor teaching and leadership and the results of a recent Ofsted which is expected to deem the school inadequate.

As a result Discovery’s funding agreement will be terminated, leaving no alternative but to close the school.

A spokesperson for Discovery said: “We regret this is the outcome but it is clear the school is simply not working for students, parents and staff.

“Our first duty is to the pupils who are entitled to be safe, well and to get the best education they can.

“We realise this will be upsetting for pupils and parents – and for staff who will be made redundant – however we cannot allow the situation to continue and believe that in the long term this will be for the best.

“It is very early days and in the next few weeks there will be a lot of activity to ensure that the process of closure, and finding new schools for pupils is as straight-forward as possible. We will offer full support to those families affected.”

All GCSE students will be able to continue their studies uninterrupted and post-16 examinations will take place as usual this month and next.

Newcastle Connexions Service will be on site at Discovery School to offer support and advice.’

Read more on this story on the BBC.

 

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