Education & Family

Tottenham Hotspur and Highgate want to open London school

Spurs Image copyright Reuters
Image caption Spurs and Highgate School are planning a school in north London

Tottenham Hotspur Football Club and a leading private school, Highgate School, are proposing a state sixth form in north London.

The free school, planned for September 2017, will use staff and educational expertise from Highgate, where pupils pay £18,705 per year.

Spurs will be the school's main financial sponsor and provide premises.

Highgate's head teacher says it will allow the school to offer an education to poorer families "on our doorstep".

The proposed London Academy of Excellence Tottenham plans to offer A-level courses in the London Borough of Haringey, subject to a four-week consultation which begins next week.

Highgate has already been involved in Stratford's London Academy of Excellence, which has been successful in getting pupils into top universities.

That school has provided the model for the Tottenham school and has been supported by other schools such as Eton.

'Bright local children'

The plan for the school promises an "academically-rigorous curriculum" aimed at pupils living in Tottenham from "disadvantaged socio-economic backgrounds".

Haringey council leader Claire Kober welcomed the proposal as a "significant step in our ambition to ensure that young people in Tottenham have access to the same level of opportunity as any of their peers in London".

Adam Pettitt, Highgate's head, said the school would enable "bright local children, especially those with disadvantaged backgrounds, to access a high-calibre academic education and first-rate preparation for university and employment".

"Although Highgate School is situated in an affluent area of London, some of the least affluent and most challenged parts of the whole city are on our doorstep."

Donna-Maria Cullen, executive director for Spurs, said the project would help to regenerate "one of the poorest parts of Britain".

"What has become evident to us is both the thirst for teaching at the highest level and a real need to retain the brightest schoolchildren in Tottenham," she added.

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