I am still waiting for four out of five of our local Council FoIA requests on issues related to Rivendale Free School, but yesterday the Free Schools group at the DfE sent a response
to one of our Freedom of Information Act requests.
I'm quite pressed for time at the moment but wanted to put it out there for those who were waiting for it. It is not surprising!
Rivendale got into hot water
for touting around before the Academies Act was even passed. The 70 expresssions of interest (evidence) for Rivendale's proposal were collected at this time - July 2010. This goes back to the validity of evidence - how could people have possibly known what they were signing up to? Interesting was the reference for '100 places' as I had read elsewhere they originally intended to open a two form primary in this area. The most suitable facility they could find since then was too small for 30, and they are now in the new process (apparently) to open a 20 pupil place per year group school at that location.
And another quick point: the language and tone of the rest of the letter, probably a stock response. Thinking must apparently be self contained in order to be done well, and that if such information were released it may impede Free School development. They want to preserve honest deliberating to protect the robustness of decision making - but don't want to be questioned on the basis of those decisions. In my quick assessment, that is how I see it. From what we've seen recently, they could use a bit of input into how they come to decisions!