New School Update

15th June 2018

Dear Parent/Carer,

We are delighted that a potential site has now been identified for our new secondary school, which is set to open in September 2019. The suggested site would place the new school on the land adjacent to Stanford Road, close to the Thurrock Rugby Football Club and Thurrock Harriers Athletics Club.

The new school will build on the strong educational provision and strong sporting ethos of our ‘Outstanding’ secondary school – William Edwards. William Edwards School has retained its ‘Outstanding’ Ofsted rating for the past seven years through two inspections and has a national reputation for sporting excellence.

William Edwards is significantly oversubscribed and achieves three applications for every place it offers. This, coupled with the growing pupil population and investment in the borough highlights the urgent need for more places in the coming years. As at William Edwards, a strong sporting ethos will be at the heart of the provision in the new school. The new school is a very exciting development for the children and families of Thurrock as it will provide a much needed additional 1,200 new secondary pupil places by 2023.

We are excited that the potential site is in such close proximity to Thurrock Rugby Football Club and Thurrock Harriers Athletics Club. This location will allow our existing partnerships to strengthen further and support the development of a world class sports hub in Thurrock, with development pathways for pupils and the wider community at all levels.

We have a long and rich history of working in close partnership with our local sports clubs and this partnership has benefited many of our pupils. Hundreds of former SWECET pupils have been coached by and represented local clubs at all levels, with a number going on to represent at national and international level. This location will strengthen our partnership working further and enhance facilities, provision and opportunities for all.

Some concerns have percolated following recent announcements which have been fuelled by misinformation. We would like to assure all stakeholders unequivocally that all Rugby pitches will be retained for community use as part of this proposed development. Any suggestion to the contrary is simply not true. Indeed the clear intention is to enhance the provision and opportunities for young people and the wider community though strong partnership working with Thurrock Rugby Football Club, Thurrock Harriers Athletics Club and other local sports clubs. We are entirely united in our view that this development and enhanced partnership will provide enormous benefit to the community in a plethora of different ways.

We will continue to work closely with all stakeholders regarding the development of the new school in order to maximise the opportunities and potential for the community of Thurrock whilst delivering crucial new secondary school places.

Yours faithfully,

Steve Munday

Chief Executive Officer