Trade union opposes Charles Read Academy closure

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A trade union says it is “completely opposed” to the closing of a rural secondary school, saying children will now have to complete longer journeys to get to school.

Lincolnshire County Unison has spoken out today (Friday) against the announcement earlier this week by West Grantham Academies Trust that Charles Read Academy in Corby Glen will shut by September 2014.

The 230 pupils at Charles Read will transfer to the West Grantham Academy St Hugh’s.

Lincolnshire County Unison communications officer and joint children’s convener Stephen Lockwood said: “Lincolnshire County Unison is completely opposed to the proposed closure of the Charles Read Academy, which is part of the West Grantham Academies Trust.

“Unison believes that, although not a large school, it is an important school for the surrounding rural area with the alternatives for pupils in the Corby Glen area, being situated in Bourne and Grantham.

“If students were to travel to the other secondary school in the West Grantham Academies Trust this would involve the pupils travelling in excess of 26 miles per day.

“This will lead to an increased cost in travelling to school which have to be met by either he county council or by parents themselves depending how the pupils get to school.

“In these times of austerity the last thing a family needs is an increased cost of taking their children to school.

“This also proves how academies are not accountable to the local community.”

A county council has also criticised the decision to close the school and move pupils and staff to Grantham,

In 2011, the school became an academy, and therefore independent of Lincolnshire County Counci, and joined the trust. The trust said the decision to close the school was made because of changes in Government funding, which is allocated per pupil. According to local authority figures, there will be fewer children starting secondary schools in the next few years for all Grantham area schools.