Richmond’s Cabinet confirmed its commitment to providing high quality secondary education for all its residents last week, outlining its proposals on how it will provide sufficient high quality school places, establish sixth forms and support free schools.

In considering a report at last Thursday’s Cabinet meeting, members endorsed the plans to support the expansion of secondary capacity over the next five to seven years, even though the borough currently has spare capacity of more than 200 places in Year 7. The plans allow for provision of secondary places to in-borough residents to rise from approximately 970 today to over 1,700 if demand rises to that level.

To address this, the Council outlined multiple ways in which secondary capacity will expand over this period. These include: expansion within the Council’s five maintained schools on top of the addition of sixth forms, continuing to support the establishment of a Catholic secondary school in Twickenham, and support the multiple free-school applications being made in the borough, expansion in neighbouring boroughs, and if the establishment of a new community secondary, if required in or around 2016.

The Council is also working with secondary schools on the feasibility of introducing sixth forms, possibly as soon as September 2013, and is supporting schools that are working towards converting to academy status.

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