More schools announce plans for academy status

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THREE other primary schools in town have applied to become academies.

Dudley Infant School, West St Leonards and Elphinstone join the Hastings Academies Trust, with the University of Brighton as its lead sponsor.

The governing bodies of the three schools will be consulting with parents, staff and stakeholders to get their views on whether the schools should become academies.

These results will then be submitted to the Secretary of State who will decide if the academies programme gets the green light.

The Hastings Academies Trust already oversees The Hastings and The St Leonards Academies.

Professor Julian Crampton, Vice-Chancellor of the University of Brighton, said: “It has to be stressed that these three schools are already successful. However, we believe that becoming academies will make a real difference to the schools and their pupils. The rationale for working with the three schools is to provide opportunities for sharing good practice and working together to make further improvements to children’s educational achievements.”

Last month All Saints Junior School announced it wanted to become an academy following a damning Ofsted inspection report in May last year in which it was placed in special measures.

This week Red Lake announced it will become Ore Village Primary Academy in September.

Joanne McCarron-Charles, headteacher at Dudley Infant School, said: “During our recent inspection, the lead inspector indicated that we were well on our way to Outstanding status. Collaboration with West St Leonards and Elphinstone under the sponsorship of the Hastings Academy Trust will secure and enhance that outcome.”

Frances Robinson, head of West St Leonards School, said: “At West St Leonards we want the best for our community. This means that we need to work with skilled providers of training and support while taking advantage of the curriculum freedoms given to academies.

“Children learn best when subjects are taught in an exciting and relevant way and working with the University of Brighton which is graded ‘outstanding,’ will mean we can take advantage of the highest quality services available.”

Tsai Tenn, head of Elphinstone School, said: “We believe that working in collaboration with outstanding providers, like the University of Brighton, and schools that are as ambitious as Elphinstone for our children, will add positively to the next phase of our journey. This is an exciting time for Elphinstone School.”

Consultation events for parents, carers and other stakeholders will be held on Monday, June 3, from 6.30pm (Dudley), Tuesday, June 4 from 6.30pm (West St Leonards); and Thursday, June 6, from 6.30pm (Elphinstone). For more general information on academies, visit www.education.gov.uk/academies.