Nicky Morgan and David Cameron gave Sutton a boost yesterday by naming Greenshaw Learning Trust as one of the 49 sponsors granted permission to build a Free School. Greenshaw Learning Trust is the name of the academy group formed by Greenshaw High School which now also includes Edenham High School in Croydon. They applied for funding for a new secondary school from the Department for Education.

I’m pleased that the Department for Education has recognised the need for a new secondary school in Sutton. Greenshaw are well placed to provide great education for even more Sutton children. Now we need to get on and build the school where it is needed most. That’s why I’ve been looking at Rosehill to the north of Sutton town centre. The council’s own figures show that we need a new secondary school by 2017 and another by 2020 with the greatest increase in numbers around the centre and northern end of Sutton.

The location for the school is subject to a separate procedure and will be determined by the council. I know some residents near Rosehill are worried about having a school built on Metropolitan Open Land. That’s perfectly understandable, brownfield sites are so much better to build on and some people will not want to live next to a school. However, the delay in getting on with building has meant that the council lost out on more suitable sites as they were snaffled up by private property developers.

I’ve written elsewhere about my views on Rosehill. The council were due to complete their feasibility study on their two shortlisted sites by the end of January. Hopefully this announcement will help spur them into action and we can get cracking.