St Barnabas Primary School to go Independent

St Barnabas Primary school in Openshaw is seeking to merge with The East Manchester Academy, one of the region’s most popular secondary schools. The academy, sponsored by building giants Laing O’Rourke and Bovis, opened last September, serving an area which had not had its own secondary for nearly 40 years. It was named as Greater Manchester’s second-most popular secondary school, after M.E.N found it had received three applications for every available place.

The switch to academy status will mean the primary is no longer under the control of Manchester council. Under the plans, the primary would continue to operate on the same site, under the guidance of current headteacher Lucy Gough. However, both schools would fall under the same governing body.

St Barnabas is one of hundreds of primary schools which are taking up a government invitation to become independent. Previously, only secondary schools were allowed to break away from council control.

The link-up would not take place till next year 2012.