£9m flagship science school forced to shut just four years after opening

A litany of problems with teaching, safeguarding and pupil recruitment have forced a flagship free school to close down.

On Tuesday, teachers, students and parents were informed that The Discovery School, in Newcastle, would shut its doors for good by the end of August.

Government withdrew funding for the specialist STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) school ahead of its second-ever Ofsted report, which is expected to brand the institution ‘Inadequate’ once again.

Opened in 2014, with a reported £9m spent on its creation, the free school invited students from across the North East to experience an “alternative option to a traditional school” focusing on engineering and technological subjects and working closely with industry.

But it was slammed by Ofsted inspectors in July 2017 for its “narrow and unbalanced” curriculum which was “failing to meet pupils’ needs”.

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