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Thursday, 12 October, 2000, 10:33 GMT
Church backs latest 'city academy'
Classroom
City academies will have greater independence
The Church of England and a construction company are to support the latest 'city academies'.

These schools are the latest government initiative to help raise educational achievement in the inner cities, with businesses and organisations investing money and managerial support.

City academies announced for ...
Middlesbrough
London Borough of Haringey
London Borough of Lambeth
London Borough of Brent
Liverpool
The two new academies announced on Thursday, which will bring the total to five, will be in Middlesbrough and the London Borough of Haringey.

The schools will have a semi-detached status within the state system, receiving government funding but having greater independence than mainstream comprehensives, including being allowed to depart from the national curriculum

The Church of England, which has already announced its support for a city academy in Liverpool, is to invest 600,000 in the school proposed for Haringey.

Original pioneers

"The churches were the original pioneers of school for inner-city communities," said the Bishop of Edmonton, the Right Reverend Peter Wheatley, announcing the new 1,300-pupil academy, which will replace the present School of St David and St Katharine High School.

And construction company Amey is to put 2m into the proposed East Middlesbrough City Academy, which will allow every pupil to have their own online computer.

As well as providing money, the company said that it would provide management support which would "allow teachers to concentrate on teaching".

The academy in Middlesbrough will serve 1,200 pupils in new buildings, and is expected to replace two existing schools.

But the investments from the church and Amey represent only a small proportion of the start-up costs for new academies, with the government providing the remainder of the estimated 20m for the two schools.

The city academies concept is a development of the city technology colleges introduced by the previous Conservative administration, which attempted to gain private sector support for state schools.

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See also:

15 Mar 00 | Correspondents
City academy, US-style
15 Mar 00 | Education
Ex-superhead backs academies
15 Mar 00 | Education
Anger at scheme for failing schools
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