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Arts Minister Lord Parkinson visits Shireland CBSO Academy ahead of September opening

Shireland CBSO Academy in West Bromwich welcomed Minister for Arts and Heritage, Lord Parkinson, for an exclusive tour of the Academy and its tailored facilities as building work and preparations continue in the run up to the school’s opening in September.

The Minister met with representatives from Shireland Collegiate Academy Trust, the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra (CBSO) and staff from the school. Conversations centred on the Academy’s unique partnership with the CBSO, and its commitment to achieving academic and musical excellence through an innovative and comprehensive music-based curriculum.

The Academy offers a unique approach to education for young people across Sandwell and the wider West Midlands. It will deliver a high-quality education that follows the successful framework of Shireland Collegiate Academy Trust schools, combined with expert guidance from the CBSO and a number of other partners.

George Faux, Director of Secondary Education at Shireland Collegiate Academy Trust and Principal of West Bromwich Collegiate Academy, said: “Shireland CBSO Academy promises to be a pioneering partnership between an outstanding Trust, a world class orchestra and the free schools programme. It will provide opportunities to students who may have found these difficult to reach without this type of ground-breaking institution.

“This school has the potential to provide a pathway for students to the very top of Britain’s outstanding Arts sector. As a Trust, we are incredibly proud to be a part of this journey and instil a love of music and the arts that students can carry with them for a lifetime.”

The Trust’s commitment to the arts is recognisable in its schools across the Black Country, which incorporate and promote cultural activities and events as part of their curriculum delivery.

David Green, Principal Designate of Shireland CBSO Academy, said; “We are excited to be opening in September and look forward to welcoming our first cohort of students.

“We are confident that they will achieve great things here at the Academy and are excited to be a part of their journey.”

Limited places are available for year 7 beginning September 2023. For more information about the Academy and how to apply visit or contact


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