College ‘studio’ bid fails
LUTTERWORTH College’s principal has said the school’s mission to create a new type of pioneering education centre in the town will continue – despite its bid being unsuccessful.
The college applied to the Department for Education earlier this year to open a so-called Studio School in the town for students aged between 14 and 18.
Studio Schools are a new type of education establishment which aim to mix traditional education with weekly hands-on placements with nearby partner companies.
The college’s initial application was successful and the DfE invited representatives for further meetings earlier this year.
However, principal Andrew Cooper said the college was not successful at the final stage of the application – despite the bid being highly rated by education bosses and the employers who had backed the studio school, which would have catered for about 300 students.
Mr Cooper said: “The support of the local community and our local and regional businesses during this process has been overwhelming.
“We continue to believe that there is a clear need for a school that gives young people a strong grounding in the basics such as English, maths and science, alongside an education that better prepares them with the skills needed by employers when they leave school or university.”
Mr Cooper said that despite the setback, one benefit of the process had been that the college had forged more links with the companies it had dealt with.
School governors have already unanimously voted to go through the application process again in 2014.
The college’s bid had been backed by a number of large employers in south Leicestershire, including engineering firm Trelleborg, Serco, Babcock, Magna Park-based DHL and Leicester’s Curve Theatre.
Although the fine details of the scheme had not been finalised, Mr Cooper told the Mail earlier this year that the Studio School bid would have potentially required the college to buy or rent new premises outside the existing grounds.
The Lutterworth Studio School bid had specialisms in the hospitality and tourism, engineering and retail and distribution industries.
Students at studio schools take high-level vocational and academic qualifications alongside work experience.
Students aged 14 to 16 have four hours of work experience per week and 16 to 18-year-olds spend two days per week in paid employment.
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Weather for Market Harborough
Wednesday 22 May 2013
Temperature: 5 C to 16 C
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