Three Acton Schools on Government Hit-List

Many local schools affected as building programme is scrapped

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Three schools in Acton are on the hit list of projects shelved by the new government.

Ealing's new high school - which was scheduled to open in Greenford in 2014 - has also been cancelled. The new school was to be built on the old GlaxoSmithKline sports and social club ground on Oldfield Lane North and was part of Ealing’s £300 million Building Schools for the Future (BSF) programme.

Hundreds of school building plans have now been scrapped following the announcement from the new coalition government that England's BSF national school redevelopment scheme is being axed.

Education Secretary Michael Gove said 719 school revamps already signed up to the scheme would not now go ahead.

During his speech, Mr Gove said: " Given the massively flawed way in which BSF was designed and led, it failed to meet any of its targets. BSF schools cost three times what it costs to procure buildings in the commercial world, and twice what it costs to build a school in Ireland. The last Government were supposed to have built 200 wholly new schools by the end of 2008; they had only rebuilt 35 and refurbished 13."

A further 123 academy schemes are to be reviewed on a case-by-case basis.

Ealing has been particularly hard hit by the announcement.

Schools affected:

West London Academy ...Academy - for discussion
Acton High Secondary School (Post 16 and ICT) Stopped PFI
Belvue Special School Stopped PFI
Brentside Secondary School (ICT) Stopped
Drayton Manor Secondary School Stopped
Elthorne Park Secondary School Stopped
Featherstone Secondary School Stopped
Greenford Secondary School (ICT) Stopped
John Chilton Special School (ICT) Stopped
New Secondary School Stopped PFI
Northolt Secondary School Stopped
Pupil Referral Unit - Ealing Stopped
Spinghallow Special School Stopped PFI
St Anns Special School Stopped
The Ellen Wilkinson School for Girls Stopped
Twyford CE Secondary School Stopped
Villiers Secondary School Stopped
Cardinal Wiseman Secondary School Sample – for discussion
Dormers Wells Secondary School Sample – for discussion PFI

Council Leader, Julian Bell, said around 5 million pounds had already been spent on the BSF programme and described it as a ' very bad day for Ealing.'

Mr Gove said: "The Building Schools for the Future scheme has been responsible for about one third of all this department's capital spending.

"But throughout its life it has been characterised by massive overspends, tragic delays, botched construction projects and needless bureaucracy."

A review is being set up to see how capital funds can be used to rebuild schools more effectively.

Shadow education secretary Ed Balls said the decision was a "tragedy" for teachers and parents who would have benefited from new facilities.




July 8, 2010