Top Educationalist Backs New Ealing School

Professor Guy Claxton will speak at meeting on July 2nd

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Proposals for a new secondary school in Ealing have received a vote of confidence from a politician and a senior academic.

Conservative MP for Ealing Central and Acton, Angie Bray, as well as international education expert, Professor Guy Claxton are joining a growing number of local residents supporting Ealing Fields Free School.

The state school - aimed at 11 to 18-year-olds - plans to stretch pupils with high academic expectations as well as provide a wide range of enrichment activities.

The school will follow the national curriculum, be Ofsted inspected and employ qualified teachers. It's expected to open in September 2015.

It comes as booming birth rates create a critical need for more state secondary schools in South Ealing and Northfields. Ealing will be 585 secondary places short by 2016 and 1,142 by 2019.

Professor Claxton, who is co-director of the Centre for Real-World Learning (CrL) and Professor of the Learning Sciences at Winchester University is advising the free school's steering group.

The academic - a fellow of the British Psychological Society and the Royal Society of Arts - originated the Building Learning Power programme, which helps young people become better learners.

He will be speaking at the group's second public meeting on July 2 at The Navasartian Centre, Northfields Avenue, Ealing. There are two sessions at 7pm-8.15pm and 8.30pm - 9.45pm.

Dr Judith Mortell, leader of the Ealing Fields Free School steering group, will also be speaking at the meeting, which is expected to attract a huge turn-out.

She said it was a 'huge coup' to receive backing from Professor Claxton, who lectures around the world.

She said: 'Professor Claxton has a wealth of experience in enabling schools to create engaging, exciting and stimulating classrooms.

'He will be working closely with us to ensure that, if we open, Ealing Fields will provide an outstanding education for children in the area.

'At the public meeting, Professor Claxton will explain how Ealing Fields Free School will rival the best of the best from around the world. 

'Parents will learn specifically how we aim to support the students of Ealing Fields in developing the skills, dispositions and character to lead successful, fulfilling and rewarding lives.

'Professor Claxton will also describe the advantages and opportunities that will come from starting a brand new school, one year group at a time.'

Ms  Bray, Conservative MP for Ealing Central & Acton, yesterday said that the Ealing Fields Free School was much needed.

She said: 'I warmly congratulate the team that has worked so hard to get this idea for a new school in Ealing off the ground. 

'Ealing is very much in need of more school places and Ealing Fields Free School would not only help fill a gap, but will, I believe, offer a really exciting new opportunity for children and their parents who are looking for a good new local school. 

'It will also widen the choice of education available in the area, which is what many parents in the area want.  I wish the team every success.'







25th June 2013








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