Public consultation on a proposal to close Raine's Foundation School (including plans to expand nearby Oaklands Secondary School, for the transfer of Raine's pupils)

    Consultation Update - Posted 1 November 2019

    A statutory notice has now been issued on proposals concerning the future of Raine’s Foundation School. This follows a decision by the Mayor of Tower Hamlets in Cabinet on 30 October to approve a report recommending that a further statutory consultation is published about the proposal to close the school. This means that the proposal is now being progressed to the next stage with the four week representation period taking place from Monday 4 November until Monday 2 December 2019 at midnight.

    A public meeting is being held on Monday 11th November and you are invited to attend this meeting to find out more about the next stage of the process and to feedback your views to senior council leaders and representatives from the London Diocesan Board for Schools (LDBS). The meeting will be held from 5:30 – 7:30pm at the Professional Development Centre, 229 Bethnal Green Road, London E2 6AB.

    The statutory notice with a link to the full details of the proposals can be viewed online via the council’s consultation webpage and includes details of the different ways in which you can have your say on the proposal via email and by post.

    After the representation period has concluded, and the feedback received has been collated and considered, the Mayor in Cabinet will receive a report that will enable a final decision to be taken on the future of Raine’s Foundation School in January 2020.

    Consultation Update

    The Local Authority (LA) has received and collated the responses to the first stage of the potentially (depending on the outcome at each stage) multi-stage statutory consultation process in relation to the proposal to cease to maintain Raine’s School, and plans to expand nearby Oaklands Secondary School to accommodate former Raine’s pupils.

    A report on the outcome of the first stage of the consultation is being prepared and will be presented to the LA Cabinet on the 30th October. The report will be available on the cabinet meetings schedule webpage from the 23rd October. The Mayor in Cabinet will then decide on whether or not the LA should move to the next stage which will involve issuing a statutory notice. All consultees will be informed of the consultation outcome and any later timetable if a decision is taken to progress to the next stage.

     

    Tower Hamlets Local Authority (LA), the Church of England London Diocesan Board (Diocese) and the Interim Executive Board (IEB), which is currently providing governance for Raine’s Foundation School, are considering the school’s closure from the 31 August 2020, as part of a proposed merger with nearby Oaklands School. It is being put forward in consideration of the following:

    • the low and falling number of pupils attending Raine’s 
    • the financial implications for the school
    • the need to continue to provide high quality education for Raine’s pupils
    • the strong performance and capacity of Oaklands School.

    In reaching this stage the LA, along with the IEB and Diocese, have explored a number of alternative options to maintain the school, but none have proven to be feasible. The consultation document provides details of the alternative options explored and the reasons why these are not considered to be possible.  

    The LA is therefore seeking the views of all interested parties on the proposal to close Raine’s School as part of its merger with Oaklands School with effect from 31 August 2020.

    You can read the consultation document which shares information on the following key areas:

    • the background to this proposal including;  school standards and the impact on the pupil roll
    • the changes to the school’s governance and leadership and the support provided by the LA
    • the alternative options explored
    • the school’s financial position and sustainability
    • what this will mean for pupils, parents and staff
    • the legal process and key dates.

    While this is a consultation on a proposal to close Raine’s School, it also includes plans to expand nearby Oakland’s School, for the transfer of Raine’s pupils. Other options have been considered, and your views and opinion on other potential options to secure the future of Raine’s School and/or its pupils are welcome.

    In early 2019 a feasibility study was initiated to provide a detailed exploration of the potential impact and implications of closure. Read the feasibility study.

    The process to close Raine’s School as part of its merger with Oaklands School will involve six steps.

    Step one

    Consultation (June – July 2019)

    on the proposal to close Raine’s School as part of its amalgamation with Oaklands School. 

    Step two

    Decision (October 2019)

    The consultation will inform the decision by council in October 2019 on whether or not to issue a statutory notice.

    Step three

    Publication* (Nov 2019)

    publishing of a statutory notice and proposal to close Raine’s School as part of its merger with Oaklands School.

    Step four

    Representation (Nov – Dec 2019) 

    Period for further responses to the proposal in the statutory notice.

    Step five

    Decision* (Jan 2020)

    To be taken by council following the representation period.

    Step six

    Implementation* (Mar – Aug 2020)

    If the decision is taken to close Raine’s as part of its amalgamation with Oaklands School.

    *These stages will apply only if the proposal is approved by the council.

    Have your say

    The consultation period has now ended and the responses gathered as follows:

    Please note that these questions will be added to and updated regularly.

    Common questions

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    Public meetings

    The following public meetings have been arranged for any who wish to attend:

    Time and date

    6pm, 19 June 2019

    Location

    Oaklands School
    Old Bethnal Green Road
    Bethnal Green
    E2 6PR

     

    You can access the presentation slides from the meeting at Oaklands School.

    Time and date

    6pm, 26 June 2019

    Location

    Raine’s Foundation Secondary School
    Approach Road
    Bethnal Green
    E2 ELY

     

    You can access the presentation slides from the meeting at Raines School.

    A summary of the legal process to be followed is included in the consultation document and more information on the process can be found on GOV.UK.

    Timetable for the consultation, decision making and implementation process

    Date

    Activity

    10 June 2019

    Consultation commences

    19 June 2019

    Public meeting for parents, carers, staff and the local community to be held at 6pm at Oaklands School, Old Bethnal Green Road, Bethnal Green, E2 6PR.

    25 June 2019

    The proposal will also be considered as part of the Children and Education Overview and Scrutiny Sub-Committee on Tuesday 25 June 2019. The meeting is open to the public to attend and the agenda will be published one week in advance of the meeting. For more information please visit the scrutiny page.

    For more information on the scrutiny function of this committee please contact Elizabeth Freer (Strategy and Policy Manager, Children and Culture):

    Elizabeth.Freer@towerhamlets.gov.uk

    26 June 2019

    Public meeting for parents, carers, staff and the local community to be held at 6pm at Raine’s Foundation School, Approach Road, Bethnal Green, E2 ELY.

    Other meetings will also be held during the consultation, specifically for staff and for parents, and they will receive information about these meetings directly.

    31 July 2019

    End of consultation period

    September 2019

    Report prepared for council

    October 2019

    Decision by the council on whether to publish a Statutory Notice and proposals to close Raine’s Foundation School as part of its amalgamation with Oaklands School.

    October 2019

    Statutory Notice and Proposals drafted* (if decision above is to proceed with the closure process) and start of the formal representation period.)

    4 November 2019

    Publication of Statutory Notice and proposals

    2 December 2019

    End of statutory period for representations and final date for responses to the proposal.

    January 2020

    Report prepared for Council Cabinet

    January 2020

    Decision taken by the council on the closure of Raine’s Foundation School as part of its amalgamation with Oaklands School*

    31 August 2020

    Raine’s Foundation School closes as part its amalgamation with Oaklands School*

     *These stages will apply only if the proposal is approved by the council

     

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