Jam Academy- plans for a new secondary school in Marlow

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Jam AcademyA local business and parents from Marlow are the first in Buckinghamshire to apply to the Department of Education to start a new secondary school in their area. The school will be started under the Government’s new ‘Free School’ scheme.

The school will be led by the Jam Theatre Company, which is a professional theatre and music company that has been based in Marlow for the last 5 years. Company Directors Mark Hartley and Jo Noel-Hartley have already gathered enthusiastic support from local parents and business people, but need more to get involved to ensure the Department of Education says yes to the new school.

‘The feedback from the Department of Education and the New Schools Network has been excellent, and they love our ethos and creative ideas for delivering the national curriculum. However, we need our online survey to be completed by as many parents in the local area as possible for it to go ahead.’ Mark Hartley commented.

Jam Academy class imageAlthough led by a professional theatre company, it will only specialise in the performing arts school at sixth form. Key Stage 3 and 4 will cover a general curriculum.

We will deliver a rich curriculum in an imaginative way that recognises pupils innate creativity, multiple intelligences and sensory preferences. In this rapidly changing world, we want our young people to be prepared, whether they be scientists, mathematicians, politicians, business leaders, authors, designers or performers – we want to nurture them, using the creative skills, facilities and thoughts needed to be successful in most walks of life.

The school wishes to empower parents and children with greater choice.

‘At present many young children in our area, whether it is down to catchment areas, 11+ or simply over-subscribed schools find themselves having to consider schools out of the area. Most parents will also want to consider different approaches to education to suit their own family.’

Therefore the Jam Academy seeks to create greater choice while complementing the two schools already in Marlow so parents can make the best choice for each of their children.

The Jam Academy plans to open in September 2012 with the maximum of 180 – 200students across all 7 years, however this will not be possible without the support of local people going online and completing the school’s online survey.

Jo Noel-Hartley comments, ‘We would love for all parents, whether they have children just starting to go to primary school or those who have children already in a secondary school to take 10 minutes and complete our form. Most parents who have been through the county council selective system know how difficult it can be, and our school will help alleviate some of the pressures on the current provision.’

If you would like to find out more about the school including its prospectus and to complete the online survey, please visit its website at www.thejamacademy.org, or you can attend a public meeting on Wednesday, 18th May at 7pm at the All Saints Church Hall, next to Burgers, Marlow.

Article author: Paul Merchant

About the author: Founded MyMarlow.co.uk in its original version back in 2000 - yes the internet DID exist back then. Brought up in Marlow, went to school here, now has children at the same schools. Quite clearly loves all things Marlow - hence spending over 2 decades doing this!

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