Gordano academy decision made

GOVERNORS at Gordano School in Portishead have voted in favour of the school becoming an academy.

The decision came as a public consultation period concluded last week. Discussions with the Department for Education on the change in status will now begin.

Gordano is the latest North Somerset school to take up the Government’s offer of greater freedoms and financial control over its budget.

Headteacher Gary Lewis said: “We have been consulting about this change since January and what has come loudly through that process is that people understand that we need to configure our services and facilities more closely to the needs of this community, while preserving all the standards and values that have made this such a successful and popular school.”

The next few months will see governors at the school working with the Department for Education and their solicitors, to draw up a funding agreement and legal documents to define the special ethos of Gordano School.

Mr Lewis added: “This is a change in legal status for the school but not a new direction. Gordano is a successful local comprehensive school and that’s just what we intend to remain.”

The governors voted in favour of making Gordano an academy despite concerns from a small group of local residents who issued a last-minute plea asking them to defer making the decision.

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Portishead resident Mike Blower repeatedly called for parents to drop the apathy throughout the consultation period. Only 30 parents turned up to an open meeting about the change of status held at the 1,900 pupil school and 18 people attended an independent meeting organised by Mr Blower, held at the Folk Hall.