Plans to open Luton’s new 1,200 capacity secondary school, Chiltern Academy, have been formally approved by the Secretary of State for Education.
In a letter to the Chiltern Learning Trust, the Department for Education confirmed that they have agreed to formalise a funding agreement to enable the new school to open from September 2018.
From this date the school will welcome more than 200 students into its temporary site in the former Studio School buildings on York Street in Hightown, before moving into its permanent £20million purpose-built school building on Gipsy Lane in September 2019.
The school will grow year-on-year until it reaches its 1,200 capacity by 2022.
Ian Douglas, who is due to be headteacher of the new academy, said: “It has been very exciting to watch the plans for Chiltern Academy develop, and to hear the support of the community throughout.”
The good news comes just days after local stakeholders, including Mayor and Mayoress of Luton Councillor Mohammed Ayub and Councillor Naseem Ayub, gathered with representatives from the Department for Education, Chiltern Learning Trust and Wates Construction to celebrate the first spade going into the ground to mark the start of construction for the school building.
The new academy will become the seventh school in the Chiltern Learning Trust, which currently includes Denbigh High School, Challney High School for Boys, Challney High School for Girls, Putteridge High School, Marston Vale Middle School and Dallow Primary School.
Mr Douglas said: “Chiltern Academy will work closely with our partners at Denbigh High School and hope it will become an ‘Outstanding’ education provision for the community, where we can also provide additional enrichment and vocational opportunities. We look forward to welcoming our first set of students.”
Adrian Rogers, Chief Executive Officer of Chiltern Learning Trust, added: “Chiltern Learning Trust has a proven track record in providing our communities with a high-quality education with high expectations for standards of teaching.
“We look forward to working with our partner schools across the Trust to make Chiltern Academy a school that the community can be very proud of.”