Approval for The Maltings as free school

Business for Calderdale event at The Maltings College, Wheatley, Halifax.

Business for Calderdale event at The Maltings College, Wheatley, Halifax.

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Calderdale is set to get its first free school this September as The Maltings College has been granted the status from the Department for Education.

The vocational college, at the former Fountain Head Brewery, Halifax, was set up by leadership staff at Hipperholme and Lightcliffe High School and features a working nursery, gym and hair salon.

The college appplied for free school status in 2012 which means it will have control over its own financial affairs with funding received directly from central Government.

But it was only last month that the school received its formal funding agreement from the government after last year being included in a list of schools handed the new status by Secretary of State for Education, Michael Gove MP.

“It’s the best news ever,” said acting principal Julian Dowson.

“We are thrilled the Secretary of State for Education is backing us and believes in our abilities.

“We are also over the moon that we are already full for our opening next month.”

The doors of Calderdale’s first free school will open on Monday September 2.

The school took over the former Fountain Head Brewery, once home of Webster’s, which is at the heart of the newly-developed Fountain Head Village. It will offer industry-led vocational courses for 16-to-19-year-olds designed to prepare them for work in local businesses.