06:30PM, Thursday 18 June 2020
A campaign has been launched to ‘save’ Khalsa Secondary Academy after its education trust was told by the Government it can no longer run it.
The Khalsa Academies Trust, which oversees the school in Hollybush Hill, Stoke Poges, received notice on Thursday, June 4 that the school’s funding agreement will be terminated with the Government.
The school was rated ‘inadequate’ by Ofsted in December and was told by the Education Skills Funding Agency in February to launch an independent review of its finances and take action to ensure its trustees had the correct skills to hold the trust’s executive management team to account.
Parent Anita Singh, who chairs the school’s PTA group, launched the ‘Save our Sikh school’ with a petition and fundraising page.
The petition has received more than 3,000 signatures since it was created last week and the fundraising page has raised almost £3,000.
A £100,000 target has been set, with money raised going towards a legal challenge against the Department for Education (DfE).
The group fears the school will be handed to a non-Sikh trust by the DfE and said the Sikh community was being ‘disrespected and discriminated’ against.
It also said the trust runs two other schools which are rated ‘good’ and ‘outstanding’ and the Government acknowledged it had made ‘significant progress’ since February.
Last week Nick Singh Kandola, chief executive of KSA, said the trust might launch its own legal challenge and would do every-thing it could to protect the faith and ethos of the school.
However a rival group of parents at the school, calling themselves ‘Team Turnaround KSA’, said it was ‘infuriated’ by the petition. The Express has asked the group how many parents it represents.
Parent Tajinder Kaur said the DfE’s decision to terminate its funding agreement with the trust was ‘welcome news’.
A DfE spokesman said: “Parents and the local community can be assured that, in transferring Khalsa Secondary Academy to a new trust, we will protect the faith ethos of the school and will ensure the new trust can support the school to make the necessary improvements following its inadequate Ofsted rating.
“We will work closely with the Khalsa Academies Trust, the local authority and the prospective trust to ensure there is minimal disruption to pupils’ education and will be engaging with the local community to give them the opportunity to comment on the proposed changes.”
Khalsa Academies Trust has been approached for further comment.
Visit https://bit.ly/2BfH0tI to view the petition.
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