Blue Coat School
LIVERPOOL’S only grammar school, The Blue Coat, could be an Academy by the New Year, after submitting formal plans to break free from town hall control, the Daily Post can reveal.
The prestigious 303-year-old selective school last night pledged that parents’ views would be fully considered before completing any conversion.
Governors also vowed that becoming a centrally-funded Academy would not jeopardise its reputation as an educational centre of excellence. The pledge followed concerns that parents were confused about what the change could mean for the school.
The school confirmed that, after mulling over the benefits of Academy status, governors are now sending an application to the Department for Education to apply for the conversion.
Should the Government back the plans, the school, which continues to top academic league tables, would have to draw up detailed proposals which could become a reality as early as the new year.
Academies are free from local authority control and can set their own curriculum, which supporters say gives more freedom to the management, teachers and parents.
And, because they get their cash directly from the Government, it means money can be spent on their own priorities without any being top sliced at a local level for council-wide schemes.
Grammar schools do not have to change their name and entry tests and admission policies can be retained.
Headteacher Debbie Silcock listed greater financial control among academy benefits and said: “Having assessed the broad principles of Academy status, governors resolved that it may be the best route so that we can build on our strengths and further develop the provision of excellent education for our current students and future students, while also helping them grow as responsible citizens