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As you know, in September we formed a collaboration between KPNS and Crossdale. This collaboration is showing promise and we are beginning to see the benefit from working closely together with another school. At the same time as we have been working on this collaboration, the Government has rapidly progressed its ideas on the future of education, with a strong focus emerging on all schools becoming Academies within the near future. Governors in school have been closely following these developments and felt the time was right for us to once again review the best options for the longer term future of our school. We have taken advice from the Local Authority and from numerous external companies and agencies to help us consider all the options.

For the last few months, we have been working alongside governors and head teachers from 6 other local schools to ensure that all of our children have the best possible educational opportunities. It is clear that schools succeed most highly when they are working in groups with like-minded leaders, who can share their expertise across the schools and set high standards. Schools working in groups are also able to secure more efficient procurement that brings financial benefit to our schools which inevitably will impact positively on children’s experiences and learning.

Governors in our school have considered a number of different ways in which the schools could more formally work together and believe that future success of our schools is best served by working within a Multi Academy Trust (MAT). Last week the governors of all seven schools unanimously voted on a resolution to form our own MAT. This means that our school will now register an interest to become an academy. If our MAT proposal is accepted by the Department for Education then there will be a consultation process with parents and other stakeholders.

Forming our own MAT will mean that we can decide how the MAT runs and the educational philosophy which underpins the teaching and learning for the benefit of all of our children. Each school within the MAT will still have its own Governing Body and its own identity but will also benefit from close partnership work. The schools forming the MAT will be Burton Joyce Primary, Cropwell Bishop Primary, Crossdale Drive Primary, Keyworth Primary and Nursery, Robert Miles Junior, Heymann Primary and Tollerton Primary. All of these schools are judged to be good or outstanding by Ofsted.

This is potentially a very exciting time for our school. We will keep you informed of progress in creating the MAT and of course, at the appropriate stage in the process, will be consulting with you. We will prepare a FAQ document in preparation for the consultation.

If we do go ahead and form a MAT with these 6 other schools pupils and parents will notice very little difference. Uniform, staff, ethos and culture will all remain exactly as it is. Staff will notice the benefits of sharing expertise and resources and should increasingly identify opportunities to further enhance the education of the children in our school. At the same time the head teachers of the 7 schools involved will be looking to find ways to enhance the experiences of all of the children within the trust. We believe that having more people working for our children will bring great benefits.

Please let me now if you have any questions at this stage. It will be interesting to hear your thoughts and ideas at a time when we are working hard to navigate our way through government policy and the impact of shrinking resources. At all times, the best outcomes for your children are at the heart of any decision we make.

May I take this opportunity to thank you for your continuing support.

Peter Cresswell