Launceston College has announced that it is to seek to change its designation from a local authority maintained school to a Foundation School with an associated Trust. Shortly after this change, it proposes to convert to Academy status from September 2012.
This is potentially a significant change in the nature of our town's local school. As an academy, the college would take control of its own admission arrangements and, as a foundation school, it would own its own land.
One idea that has been floated is that the college and local primary schools all work more closely together as a local trust. Each school could retain its own autonomy as an individual trust but could also be governed by an over-arching trust. This would have the effect of helping to safeguard the future of some of our smaller village schools where low pupil numbers cause concern.
I don't know the motivation behind the College's proposal but I know that there will be some who are concerned about the idea that it might be a means towards selling off parts of their land, particularly their playing fields. UPDATE - I have been assured by the chair of governors that this is not being contemplated and I'm grateful to him for this clarification.
Local residents will be able to hear more about the proposal and ask questions at a public meeting to be held at 8pm on Wednesday 22nd February at the College. Parents of those pupils at College are invited to a separate meeting half an hour earlier on the same night.