Concerns raised over proposed academy takeover of Wolsey Infants
Parents and councillors have raised concerns about a potential academy takeover of an infants school rated outstanding by Ofsted.
Ravens Wood School are in talks to become the new academy sponsor of Wolsey Infants and Nursery school in New Addington.
Parents received letters on Friday saying the school was looking at becoming an academy and they had until today (Wednesday) to submit their replies.
Ravens Wood School have already been confirmed as the sponsor of Addington High School, with the school being run as an academy from April.
Some parents have expressed their surprise the school could become an academy because it is performing well. The school’s last Ofsted report in 2009, said the school was outstanding in all areas.
If Ravens Wood did sponsor Wolsey infants, it would become the third academy school in the area with Applegarth Primary and Addington High. Wolsey Junior school is currently in special measures but its future is unclear as to whether or not it will become an academy.
Simone Johnston, whose daughter attends the Wolsey infants, said she was concerned Ravens Wood didn’t have experience in running schools for younger pupils.
She said: "If they do take over the school then they have to make sure they run it differently to Addington High, because if they don’t I might be searching for somewhere else to go."
"The last Ofsted report for the school was outstanding. It isn’t as though the school is in special measures. It is very out of the blue. I didn’t see this coming at all."
Councillor Tony Pearson, of New Addington, has two grandchildren at Wolsey infants. He said any academy sponsor needs to show they can run the school successfully.
He said: "This one is a personal one for me. As far as I understand Ravenswood have no history with infants schools. I want to meet with the various parties involved. I do have serious concerns as I don’t think they have a track record.
"The infant school is doing so well. If it isn’t broke then why fix it?"