I am sketching a new article on this issue. Just to inform everybody that the Mayor of Tower Hamlets, John Biggs has replied to my enquiry and stated that he will look into this matter more closely. This issue greatfly affects residents of our estate, as we do send our children to this very local secondary school.
It seems that the process to handle the school’s future didn’t involve a thorough consultation of parents.
The School informed parents with a Notification-of-change-of-leadership-arrangements that the school will no longer be run by the head of Sir John Cass and Redcoat Foundation School Mr Paul Woods as executive head teacher but that the leadership of the school will be transferred to the headteacher of Oaklands school Patrice Canavan OBE. Parents were invited to a meeting with the interim executive board on 25. February 2019.
I makes a huge different to the ethos of the school whether its a headship to do with Sir John Cass or Oaklands. Sir John Cass is a Church of England school.
I attended that meeting alongside a very small number of about 15 other parents. I remember distinctly that P Canavan reassured us that nothing would be changing for the school and on that basis parents were kept in the believe that things will go along as always, just under a different leadership. Because the Notification-of-change-of-leadership-arrangements said nothing about a possible closure parents were not feeling a dire necessity to attend the meeting on 25. February.
I remember distinctly at that meeting saying that I was very happy with the school as my child does very well there.
When parents were then subsequently sent letters dated 1 May 2019 by the London Borough of Tower Hamlets Debbie Jones, Corporate Director for Children and Culture, which informed parents they consider closing the school.
I distinctly remember having spoken to Mr Hallett, the previous headmaster 4 years ago, that the school had problems recruiting students and that the Lower School may be closed. At the 7. May 2019 meeting, which was packed with parents and students one parent remarked that on the Local Authority pupils referral website, Raine’s was not even an option to choose.
It seems illogical that Raine’s should have problems recruiting students when it has a brand-new building, is located in a very good, leafy area of the borough and has a great 300 year tradition to be proud of. It seems something isn’t quite right about the recruitment process, to which the local education authority is now responsible for.
Parents do not want to have Oaklands as an option and they were never properly consulted on the transfer of headship.
Gatehouse School, a private school, on Parkview Estate, bordering onto the Chest Hospital site.
The local area around Parkview estate, sees a lot of land being owned and facilitated by the Church of England.
the Chest Hospital is between Parkview Estate with Gatehouse School and the new Raine’s Foundation school building. The Chest Hospital site is due for re-development into a luxury high-price housing complex near Victoria Park.
There is the St. James the Less Church, who also own the land that Gatehouse School is built on, in the heart of our estate.
In between St. James and Less and Raine’s Foundation school is the former London Chest Hospital that is under development with much protests around this.
Next to the Chest Hospital is the Raine’s Foundation school who opened their brand-new building 4 years ago.
Raine’s Foundation, Church of England Secondary School, opened this brand-new building 4 years ago.
The Church of England and St. John’s on Bethnal Green also is involved in the development of the new cafe next to the entrance of Bethnal Green station. Opposite there is the new residential housing and the East London Hotel also owned by persons affiliated to the Church of England and further up the road is the Mission Practise, which previously occupied the Mission building opposite Bethnal Green station.
It seems odd that, when there is a brand new luxury housing development planned, next to Raine’s Foundation school, that the Diocese supports the closing of the school, as we know it when they successfully run a private school, namely Gatehouse in the vicinity. The Diocesan representative refused to answer questions about what will happen to the Raine’s Foundation building. And that is the essence of the matter.
Pictures to follow and I shall continue this article later, for now just food for thought.