Parents info

Proposal to close Raine's Foundation School (including plans to expand nearby Oaklands Secondary School, for the transfer of Raine's pupils)

Outcome of Overview and Scrutiny Committee

The decision taken by the Mayor in Cabinet on Weds 29 January 2020 on the future of Raines Foundation CE School was referred (via the council’s ‘call-in’ process) to the Overview & Scrutiny Committee (OSC) on 18 February 2020 in order to determine whether or not to refer the matter back to the Mayor for further consideration.

The Overview and Scrutiny Committee resolved not to refer the matter back to the Mayor. This means that the council has now confirmed its decision for Raine’s Foundation CE School to close on the 31 August 2020.

As a result, the period of appeals to the office of the School’s Adjudicator has been extended to 17 March 2020 at midnight.

Proposal to close Raine’s Foundation School approved by the Mayor of Tower Hamlets in Cabinet

The Mayor of Tower Hamlets in Cabinet has taken the decision to close Raine’s Foundation School. This means that Raine’s Foundation School will close with effect from 31 August 2020.

The decision notice has been published on the cabinet site.

This decision follows:

All feedback received during the consultation period was included in the report considered by the Mayor in Cabinet on 29 January 2020 and informed the final decision.

View the full report and appendices

Please note that this decision is subject to the council’s ‘call in’ process.

Appeals process

Although the decision has been made, there is a final appeal process outlined in the Department for Education’s statutory guidance on School Organisation.

The following organisations can appeal within four weeks of the decision notice being published:

  • The Diocesan Board of Education of any CofE diocese in the relevant area
  • The bishop of any Roman Catholic church in the relevant area
  • The governing body or any foundation of the foundation or voluntary school specified in the proposals.

As the decision notice was published on 31 January 2020, the deadline for receipt of appeals is midnight, 28 February 2020.

Appeals should be addressed to school.organisation@towerhamlets.gov.uk or by post to:

School Organisation Team
Mulberry Place
5 Clove Crescent
London
E14 2BG

Appeals received by the closing date must be referred to the Office of the Schools Adjudicator (OSA) by the local authority. The OSA would then check that the appeal has been properly referred and will then examine the merits of the case for closure.  The adjudicator will have the power to uphold, overturn or modify that decision.

There is no right of appeal against determinations made by the OSA, which can only be challenged by Judicial Review in the Courts.

Publication of Statutory Notice on the proposal to close Raine’s Foundation School 

A statutory notice has now been issued on proposals concerning the future of Raine’s Foundation School. This follows a decision by the Mayor of Tower Hamlets in Cabinet on 30 October to approve a report recommending that a further statutory consultation is published about the proposal to close the school.

This means that the proposal is now being progressed to the next stage with the four week representation period taking place from Monday 4 November until Monday 2 December 2019 at midnight.

View the statutory notice of the proposals. During the representation period, any person or organisation may object to or make comments on the proposal by contacting:

Email 

school.organisation@towerhamlets.gov.uk

Post

School Organisation and Place Planning Manager
Pupil Services and School Sufficiency
Tower Hamlets Children’s and Culture
Town Hall
Mulberry Place
5 Clove Crescent
E14 5BG

Public meeting

A public meeting to discuss the proposals will be held on Mon 11 Nov 2019.

The meeting will take place from 5.30 - 7.30pm at the Professional Development Centre, 229 Bethnal Green Road, London E2 6AB, when more information will be shared about how representations can be made and what the next stages in the process are.

After this period has concluded, and the representations received have been collated and considered, the Mayor in Cabinet will receive a report that will enable a final decision to be taken on the future of Raine’s Foundation School in January 2020.

Consultation update (Oct 2019)

The Local Authority (LA) has received and collated the responses to the first stage of the potentially (depending on the outcome at each stage) multi-stage statutory consultation process in relation to the proposal to cease to maintain Raine’s School, and plans to expand nearby Oaklands Secondary School to accommodate former Raine’s pupils.

A report on the outcome of the first stage of the consultation is being prepared and will be presented to the LA Cabinet on the 30 October. The report will be available on the cabinet meetings schedule webpage from the 23 October. The Mayor in Cabinet will then decide on whether or not the LA should move to the next stage which will involve issuing a statutory notice. All consultees will be informed of the consultation outcome and any later timetable if a decision is taken to progress to the next stage.


 

Tower Hamlets Local Authority (LA), the Church of England London Diocesan Board (Diocese) and the Interim Executive Board (IEB), which is currently providing governance for Raine’s Foundation School, are considering the school’s closure from the 31 August 2020, as part of a proposed merger with nearby Oaklands School. It is being put forward in consideration of the following:

  • the low and falling number of pupils attending Raine’s 
  • the financial implications for the school
  • the need to continue to provide high quality education for Raine’s pupils
  • the strong performance and capacity of Oaklands School.

In reaching this stage the LA, along with the IEB and Diocese, have explored a number of alternative options to maintain the school, but none have proven to be feasible. The consultation document provides details of the alternative options explored and the reasons why these are not considered to be possible.  

The LA is therefore seeking the views of all interested parties on the proposal to close Raine’s School as part of its merger with Oaklands School with effect from 31 August 2020.

You can read the consultation document which shares information on the following key areas:

  • the background to this proposal including;  school standards and the impact on the pupil roll
  • the changes to the school’s governance and leadership and the support provided by the LA
  • the alternative options explored
  • the school’s financial position and sustainability
  • what this will mean for pupils, parents and staff
  • the legal process and key dates.

While this is a consultation on a proposal to close Raine’s School, it also includes plans to expand nearby Oakland’s School, for the transfer of Raine’s pupils. Other options have been considered, and your views and opinion on other potential options to secure the future of Raine’s School and/or its pupils are welcome.

In early 2019 a feasibility study was initiated to provide a detailed exploration of the potential impact and implications of closure. Read the feasibility study.

The process to close Raine’s School as part of its merger with Oaklands School will involve six steps.

Step one

Consultation (June – July 2019)

on the proposal to close Raine’s School as part of its amalgamation with Oaklands School. 

Step two

Decision (October 2019)

The consultation will inform the decision by council in October 2019 on whether or not to issue a statutory notice.

Step three

Publication* (Nov 2019)

publishing of a statutory notice and proposal to close Raine’s School as part of its merger with Oaklands School.

Step four

Representation (Nov – Dec 2019) 

Period for further responses to the proposal in the statutory notice.

Step five

Decision* (Jan 2020)

To be taken by council following the representation period.

Step six

Implementation* (Mar – Aug 2020)

If the decision is taken to close Raine’s as part of its amalgamation with Oaklands School.

*These stages will apply only if the proposal is approved by the council.

Have your say

The consultation period has now ended and the responses gathered as follows:

Please note that these questions will be added to and updated regularly.

Common questions

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Public meetings

The following public meetings have been arranged for any who wish to attend:

Time and date

6pm, 19 June 2019

Location

Oaklands School
Old Bethnal Green Road
Bethnal Green
E2 6PR

 

You can access the presentation slides from the meeting at Oaklands School.

Time and date

6pm, 26 June 2019

Location

Raine’s Foundation Secondary School
Approach Road
Bethnal Green
E2 ELY

 

You can access the presentation slides from the meeting at Raines School.

A summary of the legal process to be followed is included in the consultation document and more information on the process can be found on GOV.UK.

Timetable for the consultation, decision making and implementation process

Date

Activity

10 June 2019

Consultation commences

19 June 2019

Public meeting for parents, carers, staff and the local community to be held at 6pm at Oaklands School, Old Bethnal Green Road, Bethnal Green, E2 6PR.

25 June 2019

The proposal will also be considered as part of the Children and Education Overview and Scrutiny Sub-Committee on Tuesday 25 June 2019. The meeting is open to the public to attend and the agenda will be published one week in advance of the meeting. For more information please visit the scrutiny page.

For more information on the scrutiny function of this committee please contact Elizabeth Freer (Strategy and Policy Manager, Children and Culture):

Elizabeth.Freer@towerhamlets.gov.uk

26 June 2019

Public meeting for parents, carers, staff and the local community to be held at 6pm at Raine’s Foundation School, Approach Road, Bethnal Green, E2 ELY.

Other meetings will also be held during the consultation, specifically for staff and for parents, and they will receive information about these meetings directly.

31 July 2019

End of consultation period

September 2019

Report prepared for council

October 2019

Decision by the council on whether to publish a Statutory Notice and proposals to close Raine’s Foundation School as part of its amalgamation with Oaklands School.

October 2019

Statutory Notice and Proposals drafted* (if decision above is to proceed with the closure process) and start of the formal representation period.)

4 November 2019

Publication of Statutory Notice and proposals

2 December 2019

End of statutory period for representations and final date for responses to the proposal.

January 2020

Report prepared for Council Cabinet

January 2020

Decision taken by the council on the closure of Raine’s Foundation School as part of its amalgamation with Oaklands School*

31 August 2020

Raine’s Foundation School closes as part its amalgamation with Oaklands School*

 *These stages will apply only if the proposal is approved by the council.