Staying in school after the bell paid of for Bedford Free School pupils as the Education Minister dropped in for a guided tour.
Michael Gove the Secretary of State for Education met students as part of a visit to Bedford on Friday (November 29).
He was treated to a musical performance and heard presentations about the school before speaking to governors, staff and parents. The headteachers of Queens Park Academy, Bedford, St Johns Special School, Kempston, and Priory Lower, Bedford, and MP Richard Fuller were also invited to attend.
Bedford Free School is one of the new-style schools run by parents, teachers and expert governors rather than the local authority. It takes pupils from the age of 11, in line with the two-tier primary/secondary system which is spreading across Bedfordshire.
Mr Gove congratulated the school after a recent Department for Education report said the “behaviour and attitude of students is impeccable. Teaching is of a strong quality.”
Chairman of Bedford Free School Governors Nigel Syson said: “The important thing is that the school, which was demanded by parents, is now proving it provides a quality level of state education for pupils.
“We have a steady stream of parents who, when they understand what a Free School means, want to join us.”
Bedford Free School now owns its refurbished four-storey building in Cauldwell Street, Bedford which is easily accessible by pupils using public transport, walking or cycling.
The school’s annual Christmas Carol Concert will take place at St Paul’s Church, Bedford, on Wednesday, December 18.