School’s ex­tra week to fight for sur­vival

Dead­line ex­tended to find buy­ers and stop clo­sure of spe­cial school

Buckinghamshire Advertiser - - FRONT PAGE - By Amita Joshi amita.joshi@trin­i­tymir­ror.com

A SPE­CIAL needs school threat­ened with clo­sure has been thrown an 11th hour life­line.

In a last minute de­ci­sion, Penn School has been given an ex­tended dead­line to find buy­ers and stop the clo­sure.

Cam­paign­ers fight­ing to save the school were told at a meet­ing on Tues­day they have un­til Thurs­day July 31 – one day be­fore it was due to close its doors for the fi­nal time.

At least five po­ten­tial buy­ers who are in­ter­ested in the school have been iden­ti­fied, although the school’s ad­min­is­tra­tor could not re­veal any other de­tails.

Par­ents have wel­comed the dead­line ex­ten­sion, although there are still ma­jor con­cerns.

“It will be dif­fi­cult and many stu­dents, in­clud­ing my son, have been dis­persed else­where” said mother Stephanie Stacey.

“But there is hope in the air and if a buy­out oc­curs, it might even gen­er­ate new place­ments fur­ther down the line.

“The school has a sym­pa­thetic ad­min­is­tra­tor who is clearly bending over back­wards to try and sort this out.”

Ear­lier this week Steven Baker, MP for High Wy­combe, said he was ad­vised nei­ther the Depart­ment for Ed­u­ca­tion or County Coun­cil can use

EMO­TIONAL PLEA: Pupils at Penn School are do­ing their ut­most to save it from clo­sure and now have an ex­tra week to do bat­tle taxpayers’ money to save an Trustees af­ter dis­cus­sions with the in­de­pen­dent school. Depart­ment of Ed­u­ca­tion and

He was in­formed of the clo­sure on Bucks County Coun­cil found no June 5 whereas par­ents and teach­ers so­lu­tion to en­able the school to were only told a fort­night ago. con­tinue op­er­at­ing.”

He said: “Af­ter the school went into Joy Reilly, whose son at­tends the spe­cial mea­sures, pupil num­bers school, has be­gun an online dropped to a level where it was no pe­ti­tion ad­dressed to Ed­u­ca­tion ion longer fi­nan­cially vi­able. Sec­re­tary Nicky Mor­gan that has

“I un­der­stand there are re­stric­tions al­ready reached 3,324 sig­na­tures. on send­ing chil­dren to schools which “The school has en­abled my son to are not meet­ing cer­tain stan­dards. flour­ish and achieve in a way that

“The de­ci­sion to close Penn School wouldn’t have been pos­si­ble in a main was taken by the Gover­nors and stream en­vi­ron­ment,” she said.

Also sup­port­ing the cam­paign are celebri­ties such as Ricky Ger­vais, BBC Ra­dio 2 an­nouncer Ken Bruce and James Cor­den, who tweeted to their fol­low­ers to get be­hind the Save Penn School cam­paign

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