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Dear parents and supporters

We are very sad to have to report that our application has been unsuccessful – please see the pinned post for further details. We would like to thank all the parents and community members who have supported us over the last 18 months – sadly it is apparent that our vision for a progressive outdoor based education is not supported by the powers that be. The team will take a well-earned break now but will always promote outdoor learning for island children

End of the Road for The Sylvan School (Press-Release April 2014)

The team behind the Sylvan School would like to thank the Isle of Wight community for their support and enthusiasm for their vision to host a new outdoor school. Despite an overwhelming response from over 600 local parents and a promising educational vision, the team behind the school suffered a major blow to their plans at the final stage of the application process.

The team were overwhelmed by the amount of support from local businesses, community members and parents who signed their children up to the school. Having submitted the 100 page application following 18 months of intensive effort, the team were disappointed that the Department for Education declined to progress the application into pre-opening stage.

The DfE felt that the group did not demonstrate a proven track record of school leadership. The Sylvan School will therefore not open. The team have always been aware of the surplus of primary school places on the Isle of Wight, but felt that the strong educational vision for child –centred learning would have helped to provide a choice for parents. However, current educational policy is not in favour of a child-centred approach, as illustrated by the recently reported story about the Ofsted Chief Inspector Michael Wilshaw’s policy on sacking inspectors who believe in such principles.

The team stand firmly by their principles and are exploring alternative methods of delivering their vision. They hope to reach out to schools and home educators, supporting anyone who believes in progressive education. If anyone is interested in contributing to the further development of the vision, or who feel that they have the capacity to strengthen the application with leadership expertise, then contact info@thesylvanschool.org.uk

The Sylvan School (2012-2014)

The Sylvan School will be a cutting edge primary school for children from the ages of 4 to 11 based on the Isle of Wight. We are in the process of making our application to the Government, which has been very successful so far and are looking to open in September 2015.

The Sylvan School’s approach is at the forefront of educational practice in Europe, learning will be grounded in real experience and children will spend half of their time outside of the classroom, using resources from all over the Island. To find out more please see our curriculum page.

We will be opening initially for children who will be 4 to 6 years of age in September 2015. One of our key aims is to allow children to progress at their own pace and teachers will respond to their unique needs. If you are interested in The Sylvan School and think that there is a need for a different type of education on The Isle of Wight then you can help us by registering your interest here.

Register Interest


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