Hundreds register support for Stamford Free School plan

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Campaigners who want to set up a new secondary school in Stamford say they have the support of more than 700 families.

Stamford Free School group is now close to submitting a formal application to the Government.

In just four weeks, hundreds of people have registered an interest on the group’s website, saying they would make the free school the first choice for their child

The team behind the plans, led by parents with children at Stamford primary schools, is now just a few short of the final total it needs to submit an application to the Department for Education.

A statement from the group said: “We now have more than 700 children signed up in support of the Stamford Free School campaign.

“That’s a fantastic total to have reached in just over four weeks and we are grateful to everyone in Stamford and the surrounding villages who has taken the time to support our vision.

“However, a successful application is not a foregone conclusion. We still need more people to sign up in support of the school, particularly parents of children in Year 3 and Year 4.

“If you have a child of primary school age, especially in those year groups, please take a moment to visit the website and register your support.”

The group wants to set up the free school to offer more choice for secondary age children in Stamford.

Currently the only state secondary in the town is Queen Eleanor School. While its headteacher Wendy Hamilton believes the school is well on its way to achieving an “outstanding” Ofsted rating, it currently sits at “requires improvement”.

Should it be approved by the Department for Education, the new school would open in September, 2015 with a Year 7 intake of 120 pupils.

The group is working with the Burghley Estate to find a site for the new facility.

Once the group has enough registered support from parents it will look to submit the application in one of three windows – September, January and May.

The statement added: “We will need to demonstrate that there is overwhelming parental demand for our school. Currently, the Department for Education has plans for another 180 free schools and we expect the competition for that funding to be fierce.

This is a fantastic opportunity for Stamford but it will only happen if more parents get behind us.”

Visit the Stamford Free School website.