Theresa Villiers, Member of Parliament for Chipping Barnet, attended a dedication ceremony on Sunday marking the move of Alma Primary School to its permanent site in the former police station building in Whetstone. She was joined by fellow MP Mike Freer, Professor Deborah Lipstadt, local councillors Alison Cornelius and Richard Cornelius, as well as many Alma staff, parents, pupils, governors and supporters.
The keynote speaker was Professor Lipstadt who unveiled a plaque. After the dedication ceremony, guests went on a short tour to view the school’s premises.
Theresa said “I would like to thank Head Teacher Marc Shoffren and the governors of Alma Primary School for inviting me to the dedication of the school’s permanent new home in Whetstone. This has been a very special event.
“Alma Primary was set up as a result of the free schools programme established by the Conservatives when we took office in 2010. I am so pleased that children in Whetstone, North Finchley and local areas will have the chance to attend this wonderful school. It combines its Jewish faith ethos with a very open and inclusive approach welcoming children from all faiths and none. It is a real success story and shows that excellent standards can be achieved when parents and teachers are allowed to come together to set up new schools. I am proud to represent a constituency which has so many high achieving schools, including Alma Primary and St Andrew the Apostle.”
Free schools are a flagship Conservative educational policy with over 400 opened since 2010. The Government has pledged to open a further 500 new free schools by 2020. Alma Primary was founded by a group of parents and educators. Opened in September 2013, it was located at a temporary site in Moss Hall Grove in North Finchley before moving to Whetstone.