Shadow secretary to step in at school

NILA 02-10-12 BE 12 Ormiston enterprise academy, Cotmanhay.
NILA 02-10-12 BE 12 Ormiston enterprise academy, Cotmanhay.

Campaigners hoping to save a Cotmanhay school from closure are hoping to enlist the help of the shadow Secretary for Education.

Labour MP Stephen Twigg has requested more information from campaigners about the planned merger between Ormiston Enterprise and Ilkeston academies.

The charity which runs the two schools plans to close the Cotmanhay school after the merger.

Wendy Phillips from the Bennerley Action Group, which formed to fight the proposals, said: “I am extremely pleased to hear that Stephen Twigg is taking an interest in the future of children in Cotmanhay and we’ve got a wealth of information to send him which I will be collating in conjunction with Cllr Brian Lucas.

“We would be delighted to receive any advice he can give us to help Cotmanhay children keep their school with funding allocated to the community for which it was promised.”

The school is set to receive a grant of £7.4m of Government cash for the Cotmanhay site, regardless of whether the merger goes ahead.

Mr Twigg has been briefed about the situation by Erewash’s Labour group and his office requested more information about the campaign last Tuesday.

Ormiston has said it has made a recommendation on the what it thinks should happen to the school, which it is due to put forward for consideration to the Government’s Department for Education.

Last week Erewash’s Tory MP Jessica Lee accused Labour of playing politics after school governor and Labour county councillor Brian Lucas challenged her to face questions from the public about the planned merger.

A meeting has been scheduled for January but it is not clear whether Miss Lee will be attending.

Read a letter from Cllr Lucas in response to Miss Lee’s comments on page nine of this week’s Advertiser.