St Crispin’s Secondary School and Nine Mile Ride Primary School have registered their intent with the Department for Education to become a Multi Academy Trust (MAT), called The Circle Trust.
Academies are state-funded schools directly funded by the Department for Education and independent of local authority control. A MAT is a single trust responsible for a number of academies – in this case a primary and secondary school - to create all-through education from ages four to 18.
Formal consultation runs until 31 March into the schools’ plans to convert to academies and form a trust. Parents, interested parties and the schools’ surrounding communities are invited to take part by emailing: firstname.lastname@example.org
The two schools say the founding principle of their venture focuses on setting structures to provide the very best educational opportunities and outcomes for all pupils, by drawing on expertise across the educational phases. As both schools have been rated good by Ofsted, with outstanding leadership and management, they say they are confident this would give their proposed trust a strong foundation.
“This new partnership between St. Crispin’s Secondary and Nine Mile Ride Primary school will build upon the strengths of both schools,” said Cllr Charlotte Haitham Taylor, executive member for children’s services at Wokingham Borough Council.
“I have no doubt this new venture will bring about even greater opportunities for the students and communities of these schools. Of course it’s sad they are leaving our family of schools but we wish them the very best in their new endeavour.”
Ginny Rhodes, headteacher at St Crispin’s, said: “A key principle of this trust will be to allow both schools, and any future schools who join, to retain and celebrate their own unique identity and ethos.”
There are no current plans to alter the timing or patterns of school holidays, or make any substantial changes to their admissions arrangements, say the schools.
Ali Brown, headteacher at Nine Mile Ride, said: “At the heart of all decisions is to provide the best education outcomes. We want to be part of a local MAT that serves the needs of Wokingham and the surrounding area.”
Photo shows pupils outside St Crispin's School.