Kent

Twydall parents 'ecstatic' as academy plan rejected

Twydall Primary School parents
Image caption Parents including Amy Dodd (second left) cheered at the news the academy plan had been rejected

Parents at a failing primary school say they are "ecstatic" after its governors rejected a sponsor chosen by the government to turn it into an academy.

Twydall Primary in Gillingham, Kent was put into special measures last year after an Ofsted inspection.

The government wanted it to become an academy under the Thinking Schools Academy Trust (TSAT) but 89% of parents voted against the plan.

The government said becoming an academy was the best way to improve the school.

"I am absolutely ecstatic," said parent Amy Dodd.

"I couldn't be happier. We are a very unique school and we need a very unique sponsor."

Parents Against Twydall Takeover (PATT), said it believed the school would become an academy but did not feel TSAT was the right sponsor.

The governors of the school said they had decided not to progress with TSAT as a sponsor but thanked it for taking part in the consultation.

Image caption Parents at Twydall Primary School rejected the government's choice of sponsor

Denise Shepherd, chief executive of TSAT, said it was disappointed but the next step was for the school to come to an agreement with the local authority and the Department for Education (DfE).

"TSAT will remain outside this process but will continue to offer immediate support for Twydall in terms of supporting children's education and the opportunity for sponsorship of Twydall," she said.

"We continue to believe that through our sponsorship the school will have the greatest opportunity to drive sustainable, long-term educational improvements."

The DfE said: "Our plan is to ensure every child leaves school fully prepared for life in modern Britain.

"Becoming an academy with the support of a strong sponsor is the best solution to bring about rapid and sustained improvement."

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