The future of Green Oak School

Tonight, I attended the “consultation” meeting about the future of Green Oak School.

Wikipedia describes “Public Consultation” as, “a regulatory process by which the public’s input on matters affecting them is sought. Its main goals are in improving the efficiency, transparency and public involvement”. Michael Goodridge, the Chair of Governors from 2011-2015, asked a pertinent question on this point, “Is this a true consultation?”

His question wasn’t answered.

It was standing room only. Parents and teachers and members of the community asked questions of the SCC officers and the Diocesan representative. I think it would be fair to say that people did not think their questions were answered. But then these Officers were just doing their job while the decision makers, Council Leader, David Hodge, and the Bishop and the Regional Schools Commissioner must have had something better to do, because they were absent.

My question was, “This room is packed full of people who care about their children, this school and this community. But, the shame is the absence of those who make the decisions. Were they invited? Would they have come?”

My question was not answered.

Many parents asked the officers to name the alternative schools for their children.

Their question was not answered.

Teachers asked why SCC has told prospective parents who do choose Green Oak to go elsewhere.

Their question was not answered.

The County Council is not like the old Education Authority which ran most of the schools and took the strategic decisions.  The Regional Education Commissioner has mandated that the school must be part of a Multi Academy Trust, or it must close.  The County Council is barred by legislation from operating a Multi Academy Trust. So, the Council has no option but to initiate a closure process, sorry, I mean “consultation”.

The Government and the Regional Schools Commissioner have created a perfect storm for the Diocese and the County and Green Oak school to navigate.

I don’t suppose many of you have heard of Dominic Herrington – the Regional Schools commissioner for South East England and South London. He is unelected. He is responsible for making decisions about academies and free schools in Bexley, Brighton and Hove, Bromley, Croydon, East Sussex, Greenwich, Hampshire , Isle of Wight, Kent, Kingston upon Thames, Lambeth, Lewisham, Medway, Merton, Portsmouth, Richmond upon Thames, Southampton, Southwark, Surrey, Sutton, Wandsworth and West Sussex.

Perhaps he is just too busy to visit Green Oak and see the school for himself.

What do you do if you are caught in a perfect storm? You try any and every means of rescue and this is what we all must do.

Fill in an objection to the proposed closure of the school at:

One Reply to “The future of Green Oak School”

  1. As a parent I greatly object , I had my hand up for a great length of time , as we were asked to only ask a question if we chosen to do so , my question was a simple one what shall I do for my children to cover their emotional needs of changing schools . I wasn’t able to ask my question I wasn’t chosen to speak . A little bit about my children none of them have any statements as to why they struggle with certain aspects of school life . My 10 yo masks himself very well as I’m only just starting to notice things which I always put down to anxiety . His biggest issue and worries are over being late , an example of this is going to watch guildford flames , if he leaves any later then 430 he struggles to cope gets very angry and will lash out . The kickoff starts at 630 /7pm . From as far back as year 3 he has been talking about secondary schools how far away they are could he walk to them ” cod you know mum traffic means I will be late ” he’s now I. Year 5 in a school we walk to locally . I have a 8 yo who also has anxiety /worries with more obvious signs of needing extra support . I also have a 5 yo who shows hyper activity possible problem but so far no signs of anxiety . My question is what do I do , I would need a school I could walk to that would see and understand the masked side of my eldest child who would take weeks no months to deal with his anxiety of changing schools . That understands that possible short term memory problems may be the reason they receive a beat u completed piece of work or a scribbled down complete piece which can’t be read as the only way fur him to remember is write as quickly as possible before he forgets . He is a child that worries he will be the focus of someone laughing at him so will hear something someone said about someone else and use that out loud . Does this make him a bully ?? Green oaks have been amazing in seeing that my son is not lazy , doesn’t understand the full impact his words may have on others . My son is an amazing 10 yo who I’m lucky to call mine who as his mum feel like I let him down for not seen by more into his anxiety issues . The school really hasn’t seen this side to him they took my word for it and got him seen by the speech and language lady who came in to see him . My 8yo is worried other children will pick on him for being’ weird ‘ that he will have no friends his friendships he’s made have years , he is the kindest quietest little boy I know , he is right they will , how do I protect him . Will all this have a negative impact on my 5yo will she too start to show anxiety issues . I know that I will not feasibly be able to stay at my job when all this is going on I need my job it’s my only break . More importantly my children will need me more then ever to try and help them make any sense of it . How do I do that when it was obvious the school was left to fail and let down by so many ppl in place to safe guard this happening . How do I tell my children it’s not their fault the school closed . My 8yo has been saying mummy I really need to try and be a free reader so I can keep my school open , his determination to read books he is not yet ready or able to do so is remarkable . So my one question is still the same what can I do to take these worries away from my children , what answers can I give them that will make any sense .

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