Brighton Academy has 33% of places unfilled

Brighton Academy has 33% of places unfilled

Brighton Aldridge Community Academy

Inside Brighton Aldridge Community Academy

First published in News by , Crime reporter

A third of classrooms at an academy remain unused more than a year after it opened.

Brighton Aldridge Community Academy (BACA) – previously Falmer High School – remains 33% undersubscribed, chair of governors Peter Kyle said.

It currently has 633 students – 60 fewer students than Falmer had in its final year before the £26m cash injection – for its 1,000 places.

Mr Kyle has now written to Brighton and Hove City Council executive Penny Thompson blaming the local authority for the lack of pupils.

The pair are set to meet to discuss the issue.

Mr Kyle said that while he appreciated that the council might not “necessarily agree” with the idea of academies, it had a duty to help local children.

He added that the current situation was “[damaging] the prospects of Brighton’s young people”.

Wasted space

In an open letter he said that the “waste” of classroom space was “deeply frustrating” and suggested that “council decisions” were preventing a “level playing field”.

He said there were a number of ways the academy was being let down, including poor transport links by bus and by road.

He said: “Immediately prior to the academy opening in 2010 the bus route used by students serving the Falmer site was axed by the council on financial grounds, despite being popular and well-used by students.

“Two other routes taking students from BACA’s catchment area to other schools further afield remain in service however.

“Parents attending open evenings have cited this as a deterrent to their children taking up places at the academy.

“Numerous discussions with council officers have resulted in promises of action which have never been followed through.”

Mr Kyle also said that the academy suffered because its catchment area was too small.

A Brighton and Hove City Council spokesman said: “We want all the city’s schools to provide a first class education for our children and young people.

“Our new chief executive and interim director of children’s services have offered to meet BACA’s governors to discuss a range of issues, including those raised in their recent letter to |us.

“We hope this meeting will take place within the next two weeks.”

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Comments (13)

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4:33pm Tue 27 Nov 12

Hove Actually says...

Wow someone complaining because they spent £26 million polishing a turd.
Wow someone complaining because they spent £26 million polishing a turd. Hove Actually
  • Score: 0

4:36pm Tue 27 Nov 12

sbiscorrupt says...

Mr Kyle is really trying to pull the wool over people's eyes...

1. The school opts out of local control when becoming an Academy...
2. The Academy then fails to get enough pupils...
3. The Head Governor then blames the local authority, when in fact it is now not the local authorities problem due to said nature of an academy 'opting out'...

The only people failing local pupils are those who steered this idiotic policy through!

Other schools should now look again at whether they want to privatise themselves, and poeple should object to any further academisation!

Parents are cottoning on to the scam Mr Kyle
Mr Kyle is really trying to pull the wool over people's eyes... 1. The school opts out of local control when becoming an Academy... 2. The Academy then fails to get enough pupils... 3. The Head Governor then blames the local authority, when in fact it is now not the local authorities problem due to said nature of an academy 'opting out'... The only people failing local pupils are those who steered this idiotic policy through! Other schools should now look again at whether they want to privatise themselves, and poeple should object to any further academisation! Parents are cottoning on to the scam Mr Kyle sbiscorrupt
  • Score: 1

5:27pm Tue 27 Nov 12

chilliman says...

I don't know where this school/academy is so I looked it up on Google maps. It's shown in Florence Road with an address of Lewes Road so I still don't know.

Two tongue in cheek suggestions for it being underused - people can't find it and there isn't a cycle lane in Florence Road.
I don't know where this school/academy is so I looked it up on Google maps. It's shown in Florence Road with an address of Lewes Road so I still don't know. Two tongue in cheek suggestions for it being underused - people can't find it and there isn't a cycle lane in Florence Road. chilliman
  • Score: 0

6:42pm Tue 27 Nov 12

Maxwell's Ghost says...

Falmer School is Falmer School and the locals still know it as that.
I remember when Stanley Deason spent millions on computers and fancy upgrades and a name change and even employed a head from a private school and still it closed because you can't pull the wool over the eyes of the parents who wanted a decent education for their kids which would be at Varndean, stringer or Newman.
As someone else said above, you can't polish a turd.
Falmer School is Falmer School and the locals still know it as that. I remember when Stanley Deason spent millions on computers and fancy upgrades and a name change and even employed a head from a private school and still it closed because you can't pull the wool over the eyes of the parents who wanted a decent education for their kids which would be at Varndean, stringer or Newman. As someone else said above, you can't polish a turd. Maxwell's Ghost
  • Score: 0

8:05pm Tue 27 Nov 12

just-a-person says...

Maxwell's Ghost wrote:
Falmer School is Falmer School and the locals still know it as that.
I remember when Stanley Deason spent millions on computers and fancy upgrades and a name change and even employed a head from a private school and still it closed because you can't pull the wool over the eyes of the parents who wanted a decent education for their kids which would be at Varndean, stringer or Newman.
As someone else said above, you can't polish a turd.
Varndean !!!! I don't think so, went downhill years ago.
[quote][p][bold]Maxwell's Ghost[/bold] wrote: Falmer School is Falmer School and the locals still know it as that. I remember when Stanley Deason spent millions on computers and fancy upgrades and a name change and even employed a head from a private school and still it closed because you can't pull the wool over the eyes of the parents who wanted a decent education for their kids which would be at Varndean, stringer or Newman. As someone else said above, you can't polish a turd.[/p][/quote]Varndean !!!! I don't think so, went downhill years ago. just-a-person
  • Score: 0

9:44pm Tue 27 Nov 12

Mo.StGrumble says...

That's the private sector for you: just so I understand this, you opt out of local authority control then you fail and then you go cap in hand to the same Council to get them to spend time and resources on sorting out the problem!!!!! Brilliant!!
That's the private sector for you: just so I understand this, you opt out of local authority control then you fail and then you go cap in hand to the same Council to get them to spend time and resources on sorting out the problem!!!!! Brilliant!! Mo.StGrumble
  • Score: 0

10:59pm Tue 27 Nov 12

rfairweather@tiscali.co.uk says...

Any resources the Local Authority are forced to spend on profit motive driven academies, the cost is ultimately borne by the state run schools. So the academies are effectively parasites gradually sucking the life blood from state education.
Any resources the Local Authority are forced to spend on profit motive driven academies, the cost is ultimately borne by the state run schools. So the academies are effectively parasites gradually sucking the life blood from state education. rfairweather@tiscali.co.uk
  • Score: 1

11:29pm Tue 27 Nov 12

Dave At Home says...

Mo.StGrumble wrote:
That's the private sector for you: just so I understand this, you opt out of local authority control then you fail and then you go cap in hand to the same Council to get them to spend time and resources on sorting out the problem!!!!! Brilliant!!
PACA, owned by the same Mr Aldridge, was given another £13.7m to do something with that school along with a 100 odd year lease on the school, he cannot give the school back to the Council but he can sell it onto another interested party if he wants to. I would hate to think of some group of dirty old men that could form a company and buy the school, that is no way to treat our children, and it could happen and the Council are powerless to do anything about it.
[quote][p][bold]Mo.StGrumble[/bold] wrote: That's the private sector for you: just so I understand this, you opt out of local authority control then you fail and then you go cap in hand to the same Council to get them to spend time and resources on sorting out the problem!!!!! Brilliant!![/p][/quote]PACA, owned by the same Mr Aldridge, was given another £13.7m to do something with that school along with a 100 odd year lease on the school, he cannot give the school back to the Council but he can sell it onto another interested party if he wants to. I would hate to think of some group of dirty old men that could form a company and buy the school, that is no way to treat our children, and it could happen and the Council are powerless to do anything about it. Dave At Home
  • Score: 0

6:41am Wed 28 Nov 12

Maxwell's Ghost says...

Bulldoze the buildings and turn the land into a park and ride.
As I said Falmer school was always going to be Falmer school no matter what you call it.
Bulldoze the buildings and turn the land into a park and ride. As I said Falmer school was always going to be Falmer school no matter what you call it. Maxwell's Ghost
  • Score: 0

3:33pm Wed 28 Nov 12

Aldridge Foundation says...

Other than those in " " the words in this article are those of the Argus, not of Peter Kyle. You can read the actual letter sent to Penny Thompson @ http://www.baca-uk.o
rg.uk/wp-content/upl
oads/2012/10/Open-Le
tter-to-Penny-Thomps
on.pdf

It is worth pointing out that The Academy is an independent charitable trust. Sir Rod Aldridge does not own it, cannot sell it and doesn not profit in any way from his Foundation sponsoring the two academies in the city.

The Council does not own the school, but it is a state school and the Council sets the admissions process and catchment area for all schools in the city, including the academies.

BACA has seen an incredible improvement in exam results in the two years since becoming an academy. We believe that the 600-odd Brighton children who go there deserve the best possible opportunities and support, rather than being condemned by views of what Falmer school was or wasn't.
Other than those in " " the words in this article are those of the Argus, not of Peter Kyle. You can read the actual letter sent to Penny Thompson @ http://www.baca-uk.o rg.uk/wp-content/upl oads/2012/10/Open-Le tter-to-Penny-Thomps on.pdf It is worth pointing out that The Academy is an independent charitable trust. Sir Rod Aldridge does not own it, cannot sell it and doesn not profit in any way from his Foundation sponsoring the two academies in the city. The Council does not own the school, but it is a state school and the Council sets the admissions process and catchment area for all schools in the city, including the academies. BACA has seen an incredible improvement in exam results in the two years since becoming an academy. We believe that the 600-odd Brighton children who go there deserve the best possible opportunities and support, rather than being condemned by views of what Falmer school was or wasn't. Aldridge Foundation
  • Score: 0

3:48pm Wed 28 Nov 12

just-a-person says...

Aldridge Foundation wrote:
Other than those in " " the words in this article are those of the Argus, not of Peter Kyle. You can read the actual letter sent to Penny Thompson @ http://www.baca-uk.o

rg.uk/wp-content/upl

oads/2012/10/Open-Le

tter-to-Penny-Thomps

on.pdf

It is worth pointing out that The Academy is an independent charitable trust. Sir Rod Aldridge does not own it, cannot sell it and doesn not profit in any way from his Foundation sponsoring the two academies in the city.

The Council does not own the school, but it is a state school and the Council sets the admissions process and catchment area for all schools in the city, including the academies.

BACA has seen an incredible improvement in exam results in the two years since becoming an academy. We believe that the 600-odd Brighton children who go there deserve the best possible opportunities and support, rather than being condemned by views of what Falmer school was or wasn't.
You may believe that the 600-odd Brighton children who go there deserve the best possible opportunities and support but the truth is that does not happen does it ? !!
[quote][p][bold]Aldridge Foundation[/bold] wrote: Other than those in " " the words in this article are those of the Argus, not of Peter Kyle. You can read the actual letter sent to Penny Thompson @ http://www.baca-uk.o rg.uk/wp-content/upl oads/2012/10/Open-Le tter-to-Penny-Thomps on.pdf It is worth pointing out that The Academy is an independent charitable trust. Sir Rod Aldridge does not own it, cannot sell it and doesn not profit in any way from his Foundation sponsoring the two academies in the city. The Council does not own the school, but it is a state school and the Council sets the admissions process and catchment area for all schools in the city, including the academies. BACA has seen an incredible improvement in exam results in the two years since becoming an academy. We believe that the 600-odd Brighton children who go there deserve the best possible opportunities and support, rather than being condemned by views of what Falmer school was or wasn't.[/p][/quote]You may believe that the 600-odd Brighton children who go there deserve the best possible opportunities and support but the truth is that does not happen does it ? !! just-a-person
  • Score: 0

3:58pm Fri 30 Nov 12

Mulligan67 says...

I am amazed by some of the comments on here. Rod Aldridge does not own the school! It is independent from local authority and as far as I can tell it is the best thing to happen! Falmer High School failed students for a number of years. Brighton and Hove Council let that happen. They did nothing. They ruined the career chances of hundreds and hundreds of poor students. The Aldridge Foundation charity secured significant investment for the site and gave our community something to be proud of. A fabulous building with modern facilities for students. I have a niece who goes to the school and she loves it. The Headteacher is doing a great job and actually wants to change things from what I hear. I know the GCSE results have really improved since she joined the school. People should get behind the school and support it but all they do is slate it all the time. I think the local authority should be ashamed of themselves letting this new facility go to waste. But on the other hand they have let the people of Bevendean and Moulscomb down for years and years so what is new?
I am amazed by some of the comments on here. Rod Aldridge does not own the school! It is independent from local authority and as far as I can tell it is the best thing to happen! Falmer High School failed students for a number of years. Brighton and Hove Council let that happen. They did nothing. They ruined the career chances of hundreds and hundreds of poor students. The Aldridge Foundation charity secured significant investment for the site and gave our community something to be proud of. A fabulous building with modern facilities for students. I have a niece who goes to the school and she loves it. The Headteacher is doing a great job and actually wants to change things from what I hear. I know the GCSE results have really improved since she joined the school. People should get behind the school and support it but all they do is slate it all the time. I think the local authority should be ashamed of themselves letting this new facility go to waste. But on the other hand they have let the people of Bevendean and Moulscomb down for years and years so what is new? Mulligan67
  • Score: 0

9:15pm Mon 3 Dec 12

cjcukcoo says...

Maxwell's Ghost wrote:
Falmer School is Falmer School and the locals still know it as that.
I remember when Stanley Deason spent millions on computers and fancy upgrades and a name change and even employed a head from a private school and still it closed because you can't pull the wool over the eyes of the parents who wanted a decent education for their kids which would be at Varndean, stringer or Newman.
As someone else said above, you can't polish a turd.
I'm sorry but, Varndean? Really? That school has been going down hills for years.

Also as a HPS student, I've seen first hand that since late 2009 our school has been improving rapidly, and WILL be one of the best public schools in Sussex.
[quote][p][bold]Maxwell's Ghost[/bold] wrote: Falmer School is Falmer School and the locals still know it as that. I remember when Stanley Deason spent millions on computers and fancy upgrades and a name change and even employed a head from a private school and still it closed because you can't pull the wool over the eyes of the parents who wanted a decent education for their kids which would be at Varndean, stringer or Newman. As someone else said above, you can't polish a turd.[/p][/quote]I'm sorry but, Varndean? Really? That school has been going down hills for years. Also as a HPS student, I've seen first hand that since late 2009 our school has been improving rapidly, and WILL be one of the best public schools in Sussex. cjcukcoo
  • Score: 0

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