In recent weeks there have been rumours locally that a Frankley secondary school is facing imminent closure. However, these rumours appear to be unfounded as the city council and local MP have expressed their support for the school, identifying its importance in the local community, and helping make plans for its future.
Although an improving school, Balaam Wood Academy, formerly Frankley Community High School, is currently facing challenges, including low numbers.
However, Cllr Bridgid Jones, cabinet member for Children’s Services at Birmingham City Council, has stressed the importance of the local authority school receiving support from the city council, especially as it is certain that demand for school places is going to grow in the area.
Cllr Jones said: “We want the best possible local education for the community, giving every child the best preparation for adult life. The community needs and deserves certainty on the future of the school and to that end we are working with the school and community to press central government for additional support and investment.”
Pushing for investment
She added that, since the scrapping of the Building Schools for the Future (BSF) programme, it was unclear if the school would get priority support from the Priority Schools Building programme which replaced it. She said: “This community school is improving dramatically but the buildings need attention to provide local children with the right environment for learning as the population of the area grows and numbers expand. We could help improve the buildings ourselves if we could re-invest money from selling our own land to be able to do so, but again this will need Government support.
“I am therefore urging central government to prioritise investment where it is most needed, I very much hope we can persuade them to do so and that Ministers do not allow any hostility to community schools to get in the way.” she said.
Longbridge ward councillors and MP Richard Burden are supporting the move with Mr Burden saying: “Balaam Wood Academy is an anchor for the local community in Frankley and a school which has made huge strides forward in recent years. There is a real buzz about the place these days and it could achieve so much more if Government put in the investment to the school building that is long overdue. I will be pressing Ministers to give Frankley that support and this week I am tabling questions in Parliament about progress with application which Birmingham has made under the Government’s Priority Schools Building Programme.”
Why apply to Balaam Wood?
With the deadline for applications for secondary school places for 2015 imminent, parents have until the end of the month to take a good look at Balaam Wood and consider applying for a place for their child.
Balaam Wood is a small local authority led school which stands at the heart of the community in Frankley, and considers itself an ‘anchor’ to serve, support and further the area.
To get your child started at Balaam Wood, they offer full transition support, a 2 week summer scheme to help new students settle in and free uniform and PE kit.
And once the new students are settled in they can enjoy teaching from staff with a high level of expectation, extra-curricular activities such as sports, street dance and drama, support with homework and exam preparation and more.
Head teacher Jane Harris said: “Our children are incredibly proud of their school and their achievements. Our skilful and committed staff are dedicated to ensuring that every child can reach their potential. The school continues to be the anchor of the local community. Our commitment will last long into the future to ensure that we continue to evolve to meet the demands of a changing society. Be part of our future.”
Find out more:
You can find out more about the provision at Balaam Wood Academy on their website. Click the image on the right to view / download their prospectus for 2015.
If you have any further questions about the school or would like to arrange a visit, contact Gail Nolan, headteacher Jane Harris, or deputy head teachers Mr McGarvey and Mrs Davis by calling 0121 464 9901 or email email@example.com
For more information on applying online for school places, visit http://www.birmingham.gov.uk/online-admissions