You will see from our News posts that the Schools’ Minister Lord Nash has now “cancelled” our school on the basis of advice from his officials that we will not be able to get planning permission to build our school on the former Harperbury Hospital site near Radlett. Those same officials who themselves spent 17 months negotiating to secure a site of 4 acres which planners have made clear is too small for our school, hence they will not recommend planning approval. How can the Government experts in this field make such a mistake you may ask. Well so have we and of course they refuse to acknowledge they have made a mistake, let alone apologise. Those same officials who have also told the Minister that “NO SUITABLE SITE MAY EVER BE FOUND” locally for a new school. So they have told him they shouldn’t consider asking for any more land at Harperbury or consider alternative sites because there aren’t any.
This is despite there being many acres of land available at Harperbury plus there being a comprehensive report on alternative sites published in December 2015 by our planning consultants who looked at over 60 sites and concluded there were some suitable for a new secondary school, although of course also subject to planning regulations. We are urging Nicky Morgan, the Secretary of State for Education to set up a new team within her Department to review the work of her staff in DfE and EFA on our school project and to get it back on track to opening.
We know there is huge demand for our school from local families and that we have tremendous support from local Councils, District, Borough, Parishes and Town Councils in the area. The County Council, in their role as Local Education Authority have confirmed that there is a need for our school as their figures show a deficit in secondary school places in our area rising from around 120 in 2017 to over 500 by 2022/23.
We have started an ONLINE PETITION to Nicky Morgan. Please sign it now and ask your friends to do so too please!
It is our great pleasure to welcome you to the Harperbury Free School website.
Here at Harperbury, we combine traditional values with the most innovative teaching, based on research from around the country.
Our aim is to develop our students so that they are excellent learners, curious to enquire, equipped with the skills to investigate and understand. More than that, we will prepare them for their future lives so that they leave school with the skills needed in the workplace, a strong sense of responsibility, a moral compass, and the perspective to understand and take on their individual role. We will enrich their learning experience with a range of activities – sporting, creative and practical.
Harperbury aims to provide an education as good as that found in the very best schools, where pupils are nurtured as individuals, challenged to achieve their best and supported in all their endeavours. We aim for academic excellence – the highest exam results, entry to the best universities, worthwhile jobs and to be exemplary world citizens.
A Harperbury education will be exciting, challenging and fun – from the team-building trip to real world tasks, from ancient history to computer coding. Our students will require resourcefulness and energy and our teachers will employ imagination and flair.
The first Year 7 pupils will walk through the doors on a September day to begin their secondary education. Come and join us at Harperbury – where life’s journey begins.
Now read on…..
News & updates
15 April 2016
THE RISING DEMAND FOR SECONDARY SCHOOL PLACES
Hertfordshire County Council as our Local Education Authority has a legal obligation to find a school place for every child living in the County. They produce six monthly estimates of the numbers of places which will be needed based on the number of children recorded in local NHS records and compare these with the numbers […]
15 April 2016
Thank you for those of you who have passed on responses received from the Department for Education (DfE) concerning the cancellation of our school. They are all including the same messages of course, some elements of which are very misleading. Firstly it is important to say that St Albans planners did NOT say they would […]
22 March 2016
Hertfordshire allocations and estimates
This year’s allocations of secondary school places once again show the reason we started the project to open a new local school for local families. According to official Hertfordshire County Council figures (Application & Allocation Statistics dated 1 March 2016) the average percentage of families across the County getting their first preference school was 79.6%. […]
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