Hammersmith Academy Opening Delayed Until 2011
Proposed new buildings will not be ready for 2010 intake
The Hammersmith Academy is set to open in 2011, and not 2010 as originally envisaged, the Hammersmith Academy Trust has confirmed.
The Trust says that while many residents had been in favour of a 2010 opening, the building designers found the timeframe to be unfeasible.
The new Academy is due to be built on the site of the former Stamford House young offenders’ institute, near Cathnor Park, which will be demolished to make way for the school.
The proposed complex, which will specialise in creative and digital media and information technology, is designed to accommodate up to 780 mixed ability students aged 11-18 from the local area.
The Academy’s sponsors – the Mercers’ Company and the Information Technologists’ Company- say the school’s intake will be non-selective.
The Hammersmith Academy Trust says that following requests from local parents, the sponsors considered admitting pupils before 2011 and temporarily accommodating them elsewhere in the borough, but were unable to find suitable premises.
“Whilst accepting that this may disappoint some families, the sponsors’ commitment to providing the best possible education in buildings that are fit for purpose means that all project resources will now be focused on the completion of the Academy for its first intake in September 2011,” the Trust says.
According to the Information Technologists’ Company, the local consultation on the proposals showed that many parents supported the project: “This area is desperate for the new secondary school. I welcome it wholeheartedly,” said one parent.
The Company says they envisage that many of the on-site sports facilities will be made available for community use and there is a possibility of staggered finishing times at the school to prevent congestion in the area.
“The sponsors will ensure that students are supervised as they arrive and leave and that high standards of behaviour and consideration will be upheld. They are also keen to see recent improvements in teenage behaviour in Cathnor Park sustained,” the Company adds.
The next phase of the consultation – on the design of the Academy - is due to take place this summer.
16 July 2008