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Academy Sponsor Announced For New Junior School

The Department for Education (DfE) has announced The Aspirations Academies Trust as the sponsor for the proposed new junior school in central Poole.

The Aspirations Academies Trust (AAT) currently operates 14 schools in Banbury, Fareham, West London and Dorset including the Jewell Academy in Bournemouth and Magna Academy in Poole.

Councillor Janet Walton, Portfolio Holder for Children, Young People and Families, Borough of Poole, said: "We welcome the decision by the Secretary of State. AAT already has two schools in the local area, including Magna Academy in Poole, and we look forward to developing our relationship with them further on this exciting project."

With a total capacity of 360 pupils aged seven to 11 (Years 3 to 6), the new school will help meet the growing need for Key Stage 2 places in the central Poole area, as increased numbers of children currently in Key Stage 1 move through the system.

The Education Act 2011 requires that, where a local authority identifies the need for a new school in its area, it must seek proposals to establish an academy or free school.

Steve Kenning, Chief Executive of AAT, said: "We are delighted to have been given this opportunity and look forward to working with our partners to deliver the new school."

In September, the DfE allocated provisional funding of £3.8m to Borough of Poole for the new junior school which will be built on the Fourways site at Constitution Hill. 

Borough of Poole will appoint a contractor in March 2014 with a view to starting work on site in July 2014.  It is anticipated the school will open in September 2015.