The team behind plans to create a new free school in Ongar are set to meet government officials, in what is considered a major step forward for the project.

Almost 2,000 families have registered support online for The Ongar Academy.

Now representatives have been invited to Whitehall on July 23 to discuss details of their proposal.

Project lead Jeff Banks said: “The announcement that the bid has succeeded through to the interview stage is a positive step, meaning the application has already passed the initial review stage and is considered by experts at the Department for Education to be credible.”

The team hope to advertise for a principal by the end of the summer.

Mr Banks added: “We have known for some time that the final decision will come very late in the day, so we’ve just had to press ahead with detailed planning and recruitment, working on the assumption that we will be successful.

“This really is the only way that we can ensure we are ready to open in September 2015.”
The final decision is expected in September.

Readers can keep up to date with progress of The Ongar Academy here.