Huge demonstration against merger of Sandown Bay Academy.

Protesters at Sandown Bay Academy. <em>Picture by Peter Boam.</em>

Parents, school children and teachers along with various political leaders have waged a large demonstration outside of Sandown Bay Academy.

Many of the placards denounced Academies and in particular, AET.

AET (who are already in trouble nationally for poor management of there 66 academies) could be stripped of the school for mismanagement.

Some pupils are planning to sit in, in the heads corridor.

One student from the school said:

“This will be to highlight the effects that merging Sandown Bay Academy and Ryde Academy will have on students and AET’s general effect on Sandown Bay Academy. This is a demo against AET not Sandown School and it is to support all members of staff and students.

“Our aim is to raise awareness of how AET have failed us as a school, as students and as staff and make it known that we will not simply ‘roll over’ and let AET remove Sandown Bay Academy as a school nor let them ruin us anymore”.

Independent, Cllr Julia Baker-Smith, has put forward a motion for tonight’s Extra-Ordinary Meeting of the Full Council.

The motion follows an announcement from Sandown Bay Academy sponsor, AET, that they will consult on merging the school with Ryde Academy (also sponsored by AET).

The motion reads,

This Council is appalled at the recent behaviour of the AET Academy Chain in relation to Sandown Academy School.

The School is a valuable and important part of the education system on the Isle of Wight and secondary education provision needs to be retained, preserved and promoted in the Bay Area.

In light of the behaviour of AET and the concerns this gives rise to this Council resolves to take such steps as it can to;

Approach the relevant Government Office to demand that AET be removed from the role of managing any school on the Isle of Wight.

To take steps to either establish or promote and encourage the establishment of an accountable body to take on the management and running of a school on the Sandown Bay site.

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