We believe that the School Planning Officers at Hertfordshire County Council have incorrectly predicted that there will be sufficient secondary places in this area of South West Hertfordshire to accommodate their predicted demand.
We believe that their statement is based on the incorrect assumption that The Reach Free School currently located in Tolpits Lane will take 120 Watford children in September 2016. In fact it will be moving about 7 miles and for this reason will only accept any children from an area centred around Penn Road Rickmansworth.
Because of the above we believe that the actual shortfall for schools serving Watford will be in the order of 165 places.
We consider that there is a moral duty to open the school on the earlier date. When St Clement Danes needed to demonstrate to the Department of Education that parents of current year 4 and 5 children would support the proposal, it sought and received support from 149 parents of year 4 pupils and 151 parents of year 5 pupils. The loyal support of these parents provided St Clement Danes with the required level of support to achieve this approval, yet these parents of year 5 have now been abandoned.
It could be argued that in publicising the opening date of the new school as September 2016, Clement Danes School was entering into an informal contract with any parents who then signed the application on their belief that this commitment would be honoured.”
We the undersigned request that Lord Nash, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Schools, intervenes to overrule the decision of the Department of Education to delay the opening of the Croxley Fee School until September 2017, and instead instruct his civil servants to give permission for it to open from September 2016.