Statement by Alec Shelbrooke MP, Thursday 6th June 2018.
“My colleague Lord Agnew has agreed to grant Boston Spa High School its academy order.
This means Boston Spa will now become an academy sponsored by The Gorse Academies Trust (TGAT) and will no longer be at risk of closure from the Labour-run Council.
Throughout this process I have been actively engaged with the community in order to make representations to my colleague the Minister of State, and officials in the Department for Education. I’m very proud of the movement our communities mounted to stop the Labour Council’s proposal to close a secondary school in our area and to sell off the land for development.
My submission to Leeds City Council outlined a belief that my constituents want a two-school solution, both delivering outstanding education and delivering parental choice. The way in which the Council has conducted itself throughout this process has been less than professional, instead of focussing on educational attainment it sought to pit two communities against one another.
I have always been clear that it is my job as your Member of Parliament to bring communities together, not to drive them apart. That is why I teamed up with your local Wetherby Ward Councillors – Alan Lamb, Norma Harrington and Gerald Wilkinson –to argue in favour of a two-school solution.
Boston Spa Academy can now move forward with its plans to improve standards and move from a ‘good’ school to an ‘outstanding’ academy. Likewise, I believe Wetherby High School has a great future ahead and is, in my opinion, already a ‘good’ school having made significant improvements under its current leadership, who should be commended for their continued success. I will continue to work closely with all parties as we seek to deliver new school facilities, as outlined in the Wetherby Neighbourhood Plan.”