Our 100% record is maintained!

With the latest publications of Ofsted reports we are please to announce the Place Group has retained its ‘perfect’ record. We are delighted to say that with the recent awards of ‘Outstanding’ to Thomson House School and Gildredge House, every free school we have worked on has either received Good or Outstanding at the first Ofsted inspection.

While all credit goes to the leaders and staff at the schools, we like to think that we’ve played our part in laying solid foundations. Well done to all our schools!

e-Consultancy for Chichester Free School

Chichester Free School is the latest Free School to take advantage of Place’s e-consultancy offer. As an educationally expert group, the Proposers selected Place to provide ‘light touch’ support and access to a range of resources that are bespoke to each Proposer Group.

Commenting on the selection, Education Director for Place Group Bernard Abrams said, “We have invested heavily in knowledge management and continue to refine our offer in this area. Groups like Chichester have at their fingertips all the information they require with the ability to tap into a range of expertise throughout pre-opening.”

Chichester Free School

Let the transformation begin!

Place Group, in partnership with Bellevue Education Group, will be opening Rutherford House School in Balham in September 2013. Developed under the Free School policy movement, money has been secured from central Government to transform what was the Balham Youth Justice Court into what will be a stunning two form entry primary school.

Initial planning with architects and contractors has begun, and the open evenings for prospective parents have all been oversubscribed. Claire Delaney, Lead Proposer of the school, described the support from the local community as ‘overwhelming’, continuing:

“The school is starting to feel real now and albeit that there is a lot to do before September next year, everything is on track and heading in the right direction. There’s energy and purpose given to the smallest detail to ensure that from the outset we get it right. It’s extremely exciting.”

Cruising to success

We are delighted to have won a commission to provide curriculum support for the new Southampton Studio School, which is due to open in September 2013.

The sponsor for the new school is City College Southampton, and it will have a specialism of Marine and Cruise industries which reflects local industry and employer needs. Place consultants will work closely with staff from City College and the new Studio School to write a detailed curriculum for all four years, which will be delivered by the school when it opens. This commission builds on our experience and support for two other Studio Schools – the Creative and Media Studio in Kirklees and the Studio School in Durham.

Headmistress Designate appointed for Gildredge House

Gildredge House, Place Group’s co-proposed Free School in Eastbourne, has appointed Mrs Lea Gilbert as Headmistress Designate.

Mrs Gilbert is currently Deputy Headmistress of The Peterborough School, a highly regarded all-through, co-educational independent school, and will be joining Gildredge House in April next year. In the meantime, she will be spending time meeting parents, developing the curriculum and recruiting staff alongside the Governing Body. Commenting on the appointment, Simon Rule, who is CEO Place Group and Vice Chair of Governors for Gildredge House, said:

“We are delighted to have Lea on board. Her experience and ethos exactly mirrors the vision that we have for our 4-19 all-through school, where every child will receive an outstanding education. We have had huge interest from parents across Eastbourne and East Sussex, and our open days have been incredibly well attended. Having Lea Gilbert lead our school demonstrates the quality of education and commitment for high standards that we as the Trust and Governing Body expect from September 2013.”

To find out more about Gildredge House, please visit www.gildredgehouse.org.uk

Gildredge House

School Procurement Service Provider of the Year’ for SBC

Place Group is delighted to announce that its procurement arm, The Schools’ Buying Club, has won the prestigious ‘School Procurement Service Provider of the Year’ award at the Education Investor Awards 2012.

The Education Investor awards were launched in 2010, as the best way of ‘promoting excellence and recognising innovation’ in this increasingly important sector. Its panel of expert judges look for the organisations and individuals that have made an outstanding contribution to the education sector during the preceding academic year. The awards dinner, which took place at London’s Grosvenor House Hotel on 15th November, was attended by over 500 of the industry’s leading professionals.

Explaining more about the decision to award School Procurement Service Provider of the Year to The Schools’ Buying Club, the judges noted SBC’s past experience and strategic approach – commenting, “SBC has shown that a close attention to detail with a supportive approach can help save schools money, balance books and redeploy funds to the frontline – all of which is to be applauded.”

Director of the Schools Buying Club Robbie O Driscoll added, “We are absolutely delighted to have been recognised by Education Investor as School Procurement Service Provider of the Year. It reinforces our belief in the fact that schools need and deserve the type of support which we are able to offer, and clearly recognises the commitment and dedication which the whole team has put in over the last 12 months to establish The Schools Buying Club as the UK’s leading educational procurement specialist. Our thanks go to the judges, our clients and to everyone else who has supported us over the last year.”

Education Investor is a monthly magazine that provides independent, authoritative coverage on the fast growing, ever changing education industry. It provides business intelligence and political insight to help investors understand the world of education and is essential reading for those with an interest in the business of learning.

Supporting Michaela Community School

Continuing an association that started prior to the school’s initial submission to DfE, Place Group has been appointed as Project Management Company to Michaela Community School.

The project will be led by Tom Legge, New Schools Director for Place Group. Commenting on the appointment, Tom said, “MCS is one of the most high profile projects Place has worked on. We were as disappointed as the Proposers when the project was deferred owing to site issues, and are delighted that MCS now has a home in Brent.”

Two new Statutory Consultations

Place Group is extremely pleased to have secured commissions from Sir Isaac Newton Free School in Norfolk and the Bristol Primary School to manage their Statutory Consultations under Section 10 of the Academies Act.

Commenting on the appointments, New Schools Director for Place Group Tom Legge said, “We welcome the opportunity to work with Free Schools on their Section 10 consultations. Every project we have worked on has been enriched by the feedback from this exercise and the Proposers value and act on the feedback they receive.”

Bristol Primary School