A FELTHAM headteacher has raised 'very grave concerns' about the 'misleading proposal' for a new free school in the town.
The Reach Academy is set to open its doors in September and the school's board of trustees is currently consulting across the community.
But while the board believes Feltham is the ideal place for a new free school, Victoria Eadie, headteacher of Feltham Community College, is arguing there is no need for additional secondary school places locally.
In a letter to the trustees she said: "There is in fact a current dip in the need for secondary school places in Hounslow, particularly in the West.
"There is no significant demand for new places for another three years, quite the reverse. I therefore cannot understand the logic of a Year 7 class from September 2012.
"Both Feltham and Rivers have small year groups at Key Stage 3 because of this dip in the population. Your plan to take 60 students from the local area will in the meantime be a really serious blow and will directly affect how we manage to continue to offer the very highest quality education with a significant drop in budget."
Ms Eadie said she was also concerned with the two possible locations for the new school, Fern House on the High Street or a new development on Forest Road, which would share a boundary with her school.
She said: "I cannot see how siting a school on the busy High Street in Feltham can ever be a good idea. The High Street itself is already packed to a dangerous level with school children at crunch times.
"The other site is bang on our fence, literally the other side of our carpark. Have you ever heard of any rational people deciding that it is a good idea to build one school on the boundary of another school?"
According to the trustees of The Reach Academy, the choice of location for the new school is out of their hands.
Principal Ed Vainker said: "The government department responsible for new school buildings, Partnerships For Schools, believes that both possible sites will enable us to meet the specific requirements of a small school for 4-18 year olds and provide excellent facilities for the full age range of pupils.
"We intend to work in collaboration with the whole community, and have been to meet Ms Eadie. The ultimate decision on which site we will open in lies with the Department for Education and the Secretary of State, who will receive our consultation report."
Mr Vainker also defended his belief that there is the need for a new school in Feltham.
He said: "There are currently no small schools for 4-18 year olds in Feltham, yet we know that the consistency and care that such schools can provide is what many parents would like for their children.
"Moreover, the population of Hounslow is growing rapidly. This is why so many primary schools have got bulge classes already and a shortage is forecast for this year.
"In Feltham, Bedfont and Hanworth there are more pupils leaving primary school than there are secondary school places.
"The response to the school from parents has been overwhelmingly positive, both in terms of the applications we have received and in response to the consultation. We're bringing a new school to the area, an investment by central government in Feltham."