99 per cent say no to Camden Junior School becoming Harris
The results of the Camden Junior School consultation are out and have revealed a strong feeling against the primary school becoming a Harris Academy.
Only seven people out of the 545 - or 1.2 per cent - of those questioned said that they think the Harris Federation should sponsor Camden if the secretary of state makes a final decision to proceed with the academy proposal.
The Harris Federation devised the consultation exercise to find out people’s views on whether the Camden should convert to an academy under its sponsorship.
When asked if another organisation should sponsor the school 534 respondents said yes, five said no and six did not say.
The Carshalton-based primary has been told by the government it must become an academy and the preferred sponsor is charity the Harris Federation.
However, parents, along with Sutton Council, have been campaigning for Greenshaw High School to sponsor the school rather than the Harris Federation of academies.
Campaigners believe that Camden Juniors becoming a sponsored academy with Greenshaw will benefit pupils more because Greenshaw will have a better understanding about what pupils and parents in Sutton need.
The campaigners have written to education minister Lord Nash with their concerns.
A spokesperson from Keep Camden Local said: "We are delighted with the response to the consultation and the overwhelming support for Greenshaw becoming Camden's sponsor.
"With 490 respondents saying they want Greenshaw and only seven saying Harris should sponsor Camden, the message to Lord Nash is clear.
"We hope that he will support the views of local people and go for Greenshaw"
The leader of Sutton Council, Ruth Dombey, said: “The results of the consultation categorically state that almost everyone surveyed – including councillors, parents, staff and governors – would rather Camden Junior School does not become a Harris Academy instead preferring the local alternative of Greenshaw.
“This is a community school and it’s evident that the vast majority of people would rather the sponsorship came from inside the borough. We want to ensure that the needs and wishes of local parents and pupils remain at the forefront of any plans.
"As a council we support the push for Greenshaw as our preferred option. We believe Greenshaw will benefit pupils and parents more as they will have a better understanding about the needs of local people.”
A Harris Federation spokeswoman said: "We have held an open and transparent consultation process and the report has now been submitted to the Department for Education who will consider it as part of their decision making process.
"As a sponsor with a firm track record of establishing outstanding schools near to Camden, we believe we have the plans, resources and expertise to make sure its children, now and in the future, get the excellent education they deserve."
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