Important update - opening date of HCS Northfleet
Hope Community School Northfleet was aiming to open in September 2017 in temporary accommodation whilst a permanent site was developed. Until recently, both the Department for Education and New Generation Schools Trust believed that the acquisition of a temporary site was close. However, the preferred option for a temporary site fell through last week which has now ended the project’s hopes of opening next year.
Agreement was reached in August for land within the Springhead Park to be used for the permanent site for the school. Plans for the school building are underway and building work is scheduled to be completed before September 2018. The Trust will now proceed with working towards opening the school on the permanent site.
Chair of New Generation Schools Trust, Paul Weston, said: "Because of the long period of time this process has taken, and particularly because of where we are now in the primary school admissions cycle, the Department for Education and the Trust have agreed to work towards a September 2018 opening for the new school.
"Although we realise this will be disappointing for many of the school’s supporters and are aware of many parents who were depending on the school opening in 2017, we are unable to open a school without a viable temporary site.
We hope that by making this decision we will be able to give certainty to parents seeking primary school places for 2017, and we hope that it will mean that prospective 2018 parents will have clarity on the school’s site when they are considering this new option. We remain resolute on providing the children whom we have the privilege to serve with a high quality learning experience and offering a new, alternative choice for Northfleet.”
Hope Community School, sponsored by the New Generation Schools Trust, will have two forms of entry with sixty places in each year group and will serve the Northfleet community.
Adam Holloway, MP for Gravesham, said: “I am disappointed by the delay to the Hope Community School opening. The project team have been tireless in their efforts to complete the initial phase of the project and those of us who have been working hard to support them are deeply frustrated that we are unable to open next year.
The school will offer an alternative choice for families in Northfleet and is now closer to opening than it has ever been. Obviously the acquisition of a temporary site is a crucial element in the project and unfortunately this has not come into place within the timeframe available.
I would like to thank all at New Generation Schools Trust for their hard work to date and hope that the project moves forward quickly.”