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Stoke Studio Colleges to draw to a close by summer 2019

It has been announced today that a decision to close the Stoke-on-Trent Studio Colleges for Construction and the Built Environment (CaBE) and Manufacturing and Design Excellence (MaDE)  in August 2018 and August 2019 respectively, has been agreed in principle by ministers at the Department of Education. This decision is due to too few students choosing to study at the Studio Colleges and this has impacted on the viability of the provision.
This provisional decision is subject to a four-week listening period, after which a final decision will be made by the Department of Education, in conjunction with the Alpha Academies Trust who operate the schools. If the final decision is to close then students intending to start at the schools in September 2018 will be able to continue at their existing school or explore a transfer to another school.

It is also proposed that if the studio schools close the sites will remain with Alpha Academies Trust to provide 120 alternative provision places through the relocation and expansion of Reach PRU, a local authority alternative provision setting which is due to convert and join the Trust on 1 September 2018 
The Chief Operating Officer of the Alpha Academies Trust, Ann Marie Lucy said:
“The Stoke Studio Colleges have provided an excellent learning experience for many children in the City, however unfortunately the schools have not been able to recruit sufficient student. In particular the sixth form has struggled to attract prospective students. It is a sad reality that such small schools cannot continue long-term.
“We are very focussed on honouring our commitment to pupils who are currently studying at MaDE, and the Department’s decision to keep MaDE open until summer 2019 ensures that the 34 pupils currently progressing into Year 11 will all be able to complete their GCSEs as planned”.

A Department for Education spokesperson added:
“We have agreed, in principle, to the closure of the two Stoke Studio Colleges following a request from the Alpha Academies Trust.  A number of options have been explored but ministers have decided that the schools, which have not operated above 25 per cent capacity, should close in August 2018 and August 2019 respectively. Ministers have also agreed in principle that if the studio schools close the sites will remain with the Trust to provide 120 alternative provision places through the relocation and expansion of Reach PRU which is due to convert and join the Trust on 1 September 2018

Dave Miles, the interim Principal of the Stoke Studio Colleges said:
“It is with great regret that the schools are in this position. Despite all the efforts of its governing body and dedicated staff, who have all done an excellent job, the schools’ sixth form has never been fully utilised.  This is because our students have progressed at 16 to further study or apprenticeships elsewhere – and our view has always been to support the decision which is in the best interests of our pupils.”

The Stoke Studio Colleges have supported students to move on to positive destinations since they opened in 2013 and 2014.  Last year, 100% of the Year 11 students moved on to positive destinations in further education and apprenticeships.

During the listening period, which runs until 5pm on 6 July 2018, interested persons should submit their comments via this link  

Please click here see answers to some Frequently Asked Questions.

David Miles - Principal

I’m delighted that you are considering Stoke Studio College, and hope that this course guide helps you to understand the opportunities we offer and how a Studio College operates.

Stoke Studio College for Manufacturing and Design Engineering opened in Burslem in September 2013 as the first of its type in the area, with state of the art facilities and equipment. It offers outstanding and unique opportunities for young people in North Staffordshire.

Our motto is “Educating the Next Generation of Experts” and our aim is to enable you to gain the qualifications and experience you need as a foundation for your future – whether you plan to continue studying, are considering an apprenticeship or want to move into full time employment with training.

Alongside our highly skilled teaching staff and coaches, we involve local and national employers to deliver the experience and skills that employers expect, and to mentor and support our students. Project-based learning is a core value of Stoke Studio College and enables you to develop a wide range of employability skills to complement your academic achievements.

You are very welcome to come and meet us to get a real feel of what we offer. Our door is open to all students who are interested and we’re happy to answer your questions.

David Miles
Interim Principal

News
The College Academies Trust becomes Alpha Academies Trust
The College Academies Trust becomes Alpha Academies Trust

Publish date:06/09/2017

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