Warning notice to Neatherd High School over sixth form plans remains in place

The plan to split Dereham Sixth Form College provoked protests from students. Picture: Ian Burt

The plan to split Dereham Sixth Form College provoked protests from students. Picture: Ian Burt - Credit: Ian Burt

An unprecedented warning notice targeting a high school over plans to set up its own sixth form remains in place, despite its governors putting their case directly to council bosses.

Neatherd High School in Dereham announced in February it would create its own sixth form in September, breaking up Dereham Sixth Form College, which it had run in partnership with Northgate High School since 1977.

Neatherd said results at the college had 'flat lined in recent years', but Norfolk County Council said it 'generally provides a good education', with a few subjects needing specific improvement.

Last week, the council handed Neatherd a formal warning notice in an attempt to stop its plans, giving it 10 working days to comply. If it does not, the council could remove governors and take control of its finances.

It has emerged that a meeting between Michael Rosen, the council's director of children's services, and Neatherd's governors on Friday did not lead to the warning notice being withdrawn.

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A council spokesman said: 'The warning notice remains in place. It is standard procedure for senior officers from the council to meet the governors following the issuing of a warning notice to discuss relevant matters. We continue to work closely with the school and the other parties involved.'

The position of Neatherd's governors following an extraordinary meeting on Tuesday is unknown, after the school said it would not comment until next week.

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