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Burnt Mill offer students places at sister school in Stansted Mountfitchet

Communities / Wed 4th Mar 2015 at 12:40pm

CHILDREN on the waiting list to join Burnt Mill Academy from September are being offered a place at its new partner school.

A total of 210 Year 6 pupils discovered they had secured their place at the outstanding academy, in First Avenue, Harlow, for the new school year this week.

The ever-popular school, however, still has more than 300 names on its waiting list, with parents preparing to go to appeal in an attempt to get their child enrolled.

Headteacher Helena Mills has recently taken responsibility for another secondary school, Forest Hall School, in Stansted Mountfitchet. The school, which received an Ofsted rating of Good in 2013, joined the Burnt Mill Co-operative Academy Trust (BMAT) on February 1.

Children failing to get into Burnt Mill are being offered the opportunity to instead go to Forest Hall, dubbed “mini Burnt Mill”, as it is being run by the same leaders and with the same ethos and routines.
Former Burnt Mill deputy headteacher, Stephen Hehir, has been drafted in as acting headteacher at Forest Hall.

Ms Mills said: “I knew we wouldn’t be able to accommodate all the children who really wanted a place at Burnt Mill, because we are full and have taken over our PAN in previous years.

“I know what we offer here is quite unique and that so many parents are desperate for their children to gain from the opportunities we offer. The only way to be able to accommodate more families is to offer places to families in our sister school, Forest Hall.

“Forest Hall has spaces because the Uttlesford area has not had the same population growth. As executive head of both schools, in Harlow and Stansted, I am able to ensure our outstanding practices are enjoyed by all our children. Indeed, students in both schools benefit from our fantastic leaders, outstanding teachers and amazing facilities. Only this weekend, Forest Hall and Burnt Mill Year 11 scientists received tutoring here at Burnt Mill to ensure they are on track for the A* they are capable of achieving.

“Our philosophy at Burnt Mill and Forest Hall is that children only get one chance at secondary education and we cannot allow them to fail. Our job is to inspire every child in our care to achieve amazing things.”

Children from Harlow joining Forest Hall will be taken to and from by school bus on the 20-minute journey to Stansted. One parent has already signed up.

BMAT is also responsible for Roydon, Cooks Spinney, Freshwaters and Little Parndon primary schools in Harlow.

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