Hundreds sign petition calling for Hewett School to remain with the local authority
- Credit: copyright: Archant 2014
Hundreds of people have signed an online petition opposing any moves to turn a troubled Norwich high school into an academy.
The Hewett School was last month plunged into special measures when it received an 'inadequate' Ofsted rating, a judgement which the Department for Education expects to trigger conversion to an academy under a sponsor independent of the county council.
Gordon Boyd, assistant director of children's services at Norfolk County Council, has said it was 'unclear' whether the school might close.
Stephen Little, who has a son at the school, and is also a Green Party city councillor, launched the petition, and called for high-level political support for the school.
The petition states: 'We, the undersigned, call on Norfolk County Council to give their full support to Hewett School, and do all in their power to secure its future and success as a Local Authority school.'
He said: 'They should not just meekly accept that it will lose pupils to the Jane Austen College. They should get out there and say it's a great school. Improvements need to be made but there is nothing about becoming an academy that would help.
'It's only just over a year ago that the school was graded 'good'. The results since then have been disappointing, but culturally there is nothing to say why it can't get to the point it was at just over a year ago.'
As well as the recent Ofsted judgement, the school has faced a deficit of hundreds of thousands of pounds, and hundreds of unfilled places
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