A school launching in Shepherd's Bush next year will have IT and digital and creative media at its heart, according to its newly appointed head teacher.
Gary Kynaston has been named as the head of the Hammersmith Academy, which is being built as part of the borough's Building Schools for the Future programme to improve education and tackle a shortage of pupil spaces in Hammersmith and Fulham.
Mr Kynaston has 20 years' experience in teaching, and for the last eight has been deputy head of Quintin Kynaston School in St John's Wood, rated as outstanding by Ofsted.
The Hammersmith Academy, in a model favoured by the new coalition government, is sponsored by the Information Technologists’ Company and the Mercers' Company – livery companies based in the City of London which have a historic mandate to maintain high industry standards.
The firms contributed substantially to the construction costs of the circular building, in Melina Road, Shepherd's Bush, and will have a hand in how the school is run.
Speaking after his appointment last week, Mr Kynaston said the academy's focus on technology would create a 'fantastically exciting opportunity to set the agenda of a new school in a new building'.
He said: "All the stakeholders are buying into an ethos of high standards, and that is one of the tremendous benefits of the support from the livery companies.
"They offer support on a leadership level and experience in education as well as business, but more importantly they deliver a sense of purpose of the highest educational values for all, a determination that all children from all backgrounds should succeed."
The school will begin accepting pupils into years seven and 12, the start of sixth form, from September 2011, and will be open to all.
"This is a highly aspirational local community," said Mr Kynaston. "My aim is to tap into those aspirations within the students, helping them become lead citizens in business, commerce and public life."
Information technology, and digital and creative media will be the academy's twin specialist subjects.
Charles Hughes, master of the Information Technologists’ Company said: "The institution will, of course, be IT-rich, but that will not be a separate part of the work of the school. We see them using the best of technology to improve the teaching of other, traditionally academic subjects and, in time, becoming an exemplar for the future, a blueprint to produce subsequent generations of educated, motivated, culturally aware citizens on which our industry, and the whole of our society, will depend."