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17 June 2019

Hampton Academies Trust – Seeking your views

You may have seen the recent news story that permission has been given in principle for a Catholic primary school to open on the Hampton development:

https://www.peterboroughtoday.co.uk/education/government-gives-go-ahead-for-new-roman-catholic-school-in-peterborough-1-8963930

However, this decision will now have to go out to consultation. We will be keen to make our voice heard and we think many of you will be too.

The Hampton Academies Trust does not agree with this decision for the following reasons:

The school will not meet public need / local demand

Peterborough and Hampton in particular have been and are expected to remain areas of high population growth. What is needed is a strategy to provide sufficient school places for all.

A faith school is allowed to admit a high proportion of its pupils on the basis of their religion, which would mean they would able to admit large numbers of pupils from outside of the development. This would mean that the school would not deliver sufficient school places to meet the growing local demand.

In the article Stephen Evans of the National Secular Society states that ‘it would be a grave injustice if the opening of a new faith school with the power to turn children away on religious grounds curtails plans to open an inclusive secular school that serves all families equally.’ We believe that this is exactly what could happen, if this proposal goes ahead, because it has been approved ahead of HAT’s bid to build another local community primary school.

True community cohesion happens when people come together

We passionately believe that best way to ensure community cohesion is through educating all children together and that the life of a school is often a conduit for contact between parents and carers from different backgrounds. We think it would be a real shame if we lost that on Hampton.

Adverse impact on families and the environment

Hampton residents are all too familiar with long waiting lists and the challenge of trying to get their child into a local school. If this plan were to be approved we could have a situation where children from outside the area are being driven onto Hampton each day, while Hampton children, unable to get a local school place, are driven to other parts of the city.

What do YOU think?

If you have a view on this decision we are very keen to hear it. Please follow the link to register your views

https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/hamptonschoolfeedback