Stanley Road, Worcester, Worcestershire, WR5 1BD

01905 355043

office@stanleyroad.worcs.sch.uk

Stanley Road Primary School

Nurture, Inspire, Achieve

Academy Process

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Documents relating to Stanley Road's Governors' proposal to become an academy with the Perry Hall Multi-Academy Trust.  Newsletters, with academy updates,  are available at the bottom of the page. 

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 Multi-academy_trusts_good_practice_guidance_and_expectations_for_growth (1).pdfDownload
 Pros & cons of academy status.pdfDownload
 School responses to Worcester News.pdfDownload
 SRPS consultation answers.pdfDownload
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 Consideration of existing MATs 2017.pdfDownload
 FAQS Apr18.pdfDownload
 MAT presentation evening invite.pdfDownload
 Multi Academy Trusts investigated Nov17.pdfDownload
 Presentation 30.10.18 - responses.pdfDownload
 Q&A 19.04.18.pdfDownload
 Response to 10 concerns 10.10.18.pdfDownload
 SRPS consultation ltr Mar18.pdfDownload
 WCC v PHMAT pros and cons.pdfDownload
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20.11.2018

Dear Parents and Carers,

 As the Governing Body of Stanley Road Primary School we would like to thank you all for your feedback during the academy consultation process, including attendance at meetings, discussions with Governors at parent’s evenings, emails, questions and responses to our Parents’ ballot.

 After an extended consultation period including a ballot of parents, the Governing body continues to be committed to converting to academy status. We are delighted to announce that Stanley Road Primary School will join Perry Hall Multi-Academy Trust on 1st January 2019.

 We have made this this decision in the long-term interests of our current and future students, of our staff, and of the community in which we serve.

 Reaching this decision has been a necessarily demanding and sometimes difficult process.  As a governing body we have debated and discussed, expressing concerns and questions freely. Long and careful thought has been given to all issues surrounding becoming an Academy. Please be assured that all views, comments and questions from staff, parents, children, our local community and educational professionals have been taken into account and informed the process.

 We are excited about the future with Perry Hall. We believe this decision will not only maintain the excellence of our school, but allow it to perform even better with the opportunity to work with schools that encounter and solve similar if not identical challenges: this offers huge benefits to Stanley Road.

 Many thanks for your responses to the parents’ ballot which has informed the governors final decision making. The results, based on 77 responses, are shown below

Join the Perry Hall Multi Academy Trust 39
Do not join a multi-academy trust 16
Join a different Trust 2
Don't know 19 Spoiled Returns 1

 The Governing Body take the responsibility of supporting your children through their educational journey and their personal development very seriously indeed. We believe this decision assists us to do that in the most effective way. Thank you, once again, for your support as we embark on this new journey into an even brighter future for Stanley Road Primary School.

 Yours sincerely,

Norman Tomsett,

Chair of Governors, on behalf of the Governing Body of Stanley Road Primary School & Nursery

 

Stanley Road’s Proposed Partnership with Perry Hall Multi-Academy Trust

A response to parental concerns

 11.10.18

As some of you will be aware a few of our parents feel very strongly about the discussion the governing body have had in terms of moving to join an academy.  They have put together some information which they distributed to parents at our school gate.  As chair of governors I felt it was appropriate for myself and the governors to respond to this to alleviate growing concerns.

Concern 1: joining a MAT does not mean that more money is spent on each child.

Response: The funding for a MAT and for a local authority school is the same. Stanley Road would receive its funding per pupil directly from the government; special needs and some additional funding would come from the county council. It has never been claimed that joining the Trust would bring in more funding but the governors believe that Stanley Road would have more choice over its expenditure and would gain value for money through working with a smaller and more efficient organisation. The fact also remains that the Local Authority takes a top-slice, but we still have to pay for Service Level Agreements (SLA’s) for the services we require such as property services, education improvement advice, HR and finance. If we join the Perry Hall MAT that same contribution includes financial, HR, school improvement and property advice, so we’ll be paying less and, we believe, get better service and value.

Concern: 8 out of ten MATs have money problems.

Response: Some MATs have had money problems but after 5 years of audited accounts, the governors are confident that Perry Hall is in a secure financial position with appropriate and robust systems and the resources to maintain this. We can find no evidence to support the 8 out of 10 claim. In the majority of cases where MATs have failed they have been secondary Trusts. The common reason for failure is growing too quickly and a mismatch of values. This is not the case with Perry Hall. The evidence from Perry Hall’s audited accounts suggests that this is a financially secure MAT with effective accounting.

Concern 2: There is no pressure from government that successful schools will become academies.

Response:  The government’s ambition is still that all schools will become academies, although the deadline has been removed. Stanley Road has been judged Good by Ofsted five times under the current Headteacher and is seeking the best possible further development for an already successful school. We consider the best way to continue this journey is with the considerable expertise of the teaching school and high performing school improvement record of Perry Hall MAT. All the schools within the Perry Hall MAT have improved their outcomes and performance since joining the MAT, our ambition at Stanley Road is to ensure that our children receive the best opportunities and education possible. We as a governing body feel that the Trust will provide us with this.

Concern 3: Chief Executives of MATs are often paid exorbitant salaries.

Response: Whilst some chief executives of MATs are paid high salaries, as reported in recent news coverage, the published salary of Perry Hall’s CEO remains within the government’s recommended pay scales for UK primary school leaders. It seems reasonable to expect a salary to increase as accountability and responsibilities increase.

Concern 4: Public money can be more easily misused in MATs.

Response: Money can equally be misused in the academy, maintained, church or independent education sectors. There are examples of corrupt and fraudulent practices within maintained schools. The Panorama programme highlighted the extreme practices of one Trust. There are many good Trusts and the governors believe that Perry Hall is one of these. Perry Hall is subject to meticulous and detailed auditing; its financial records are open and transparent and can be examined by anyone who wishes to do so. Having visited the other schools in the Trust we have seen the improvements made to their buildings and resources, and therefore the provision for pupils.

Concern 5: There is no going back to the Local Authority if the MAT fails.

Response: Were the Trust ever to fail, Stanley Road would join an alternative Trust. If the partnership was not successful there is a process for academies to leave their Trusts, however this is rare. One of the reasons for moving to a MAT is the decline of the Local Authority so it is unlikely we would wish to return. Worcestershire has become a commissioning authority: their school improvement is run by Babcock, Liberata, Place Partnership and Jacobs run other departments which WCC used to lead.

Concern 6: Stanley Road could lose autonomy. The MAT could replace a teacher with an unqualified teacher and make TA’s apply for their jobs on a lower pay scale.

Response: Any school can currently use unqualified teachers, reduce the number of teaching assistants and advertise posts on lower pay scales. We do not do this, nor does Perry Hall MAT, and have no intention of doing so. Stanley Road’s curriculum, assessment and ethos will continue to be set by its governors and it will have a strong voice on Perry Hall’s Trustees, equal to the other schools in the MAT.

Concern 7: Teachers in academies are more likely to leave to work in another school.

Response: There is no evidence to show that teachers in academies are more likely to leave to work in other schools. Stanley Road will continue to safeguard the wellbeing and professional development of its staff, supported by Perry Hall Trust who share this ethos of high expectations and quality staff care. The DfE recommendations for Trusts encourage sustainability and staff retention within Trusts.

Concern 8: MATs are less accountable to parents/carers

Response: MATs and maintained schools are bound by the same accountability, the same complaints procedure and the same legal frameworks. If anything, executive headship and Trustees above the traditional structure gives a “higher court of appeal” in effect. Ultimately parents always have the right to make complaints to Ofsted, whether the school is maintained or an academy.

Concern 9: MATs have poor reputation for supporting pupils with Special Educational Needs.

Response: There is no evidence to support the allegation that children with special educational needs or looked after (fostered) children are disadvantaged in any way in an academy rather than a maintained school – there are many maintained schools who do not have good SEN provision. In the case of Perry Hall, the CEO is a former SENDco who has spoken of her commitment to the inclusion of pupils with special needs and disadvantages.

Concern 10: MATs can sprawl over large areas and be governed by trustees who have no interest in the local area or community.

 Response: MATs can indeed spread over large areas and some of the most successful ones do (e.g. Harris and REAch2). We have chosen a MAT that has shown they understand the locality and specific challenges of Stanley Road; some of their schools are in very similar circumstances to Stanley Road - one is the closest match we have ever found. We believe that leaders with a strong moral compass will always take an active interest in local issues and the individuality of schools. Perry Hall expects each school to make its own decisions based on the needs of its pupils, so we will continue to do just that if we join them.

 Mr N. Tomsett, Chair of Governors

9.10.18

Dear parents and carers,

                                            We held two meetings yesterday for you to meet with governors, staff and members of the Perry Hall Multi-Academy Trust (MAT).

 In September 2017 our newsletter let you know that we were thinking about joining a MAT and in October parents were invited to discuss Stanley Road as an academy at the parents’ forum. This means that we would move away from Worcestershire County Council, be funded directly by the government and work with a Trust to continually improve the school. The general view of that meeting was that parents just wanted the best for their children. During February, March, April and May updates were on the newsletter and we held a consultation meeting on the 19th March 2018.

 At that meeting some parents expressed concern that the governors had not fully completed their duties to check out our chosen Trust through the ‘due diligence’ process. Since then the process has been completed and is shortly to be signed off; Perry Hall have been in to school regularly and completed due diligence on us. Additional meetings were held at 2pm and 6pm yesterday for any further questions to be asked.  The governors have unanimously agreed to proceed with Perry Hall MAT and they are your representatives, but it was suggested that you as parents do not feel involved in the decision-making.

 As a school we feel that a partnership with Perry Hall is in the best interests of the school: we are working with them on aspects of school improvement and have forged good relationships with their staff, including the business team who have been very helpful. One of the reasons we initially looked to join a Trust was because they are able to provide a higher level of educational and administrative support than Worcestershire County Council.

 Also included with this letter is a copy of the communication posted onto the website on 28th September with a new closing date for your further questions.

______________________________________________________________________________

What do you think?   Please tick the box that you agree with

¨ Stanley Road should join Perry Hall MAT

¨ Stanley Road should join another Trust

¨ Stanley Road should not join a Trust and stay with the Local Authority

¨ I don’t know

                                                             Signed ………………………………………..

 Please let us know your views and return your slip to school as soon as possible.

Your opinion is important to us and will help to inform the governors’ next steps in this matter.

Latest Newsletters

9.10.18

Dear parent / carer,

 ACADEMY CONVERSION CONSULTATION

After considering all of the other factors, our Governing Body have made the decision to convert to an academy and join Perry Hall Multi-Academy Trust.

Our application to convert has been officially approved at the Headteacher Board.

As a result, we are now consulting with parents / carers, staff and the local community.

In order to find out more about what academy status would mean, please visit our website where you can find the full consultation documents along with copies of other items relating to the academy conversion.

If you wish to ask any questions in response to this consultation you can email your views to office@stanleyroad.worcs.sch.uk.

Please make sure you include your name as well as the name and class of your son or daughter.  The consultation period will end on 26th October 2018

At Stanley Road Primary School our aim is to provide excellent education for the children of local families in collaboration with other local schools, and we believe that the move to academy status will help us to protect this.

The educational objectives of this partnership are as follows:

  • The effectiveness of leadership and management: Leaders at all levels including Governors, to hold staff to account in the pursuit of excellence hence ensuring high levels of achievement and personal development for all pupils.
  • The quality of teaching, learning and assessment: To work in partnership, to ensure that the quality of teaching and learning is never less than good and in the vast majority of cases outstanding. Hence ensuring outcomes for pupils are at least in line with National and better in most cases.
  • Personal development, behaviour and welfare: To ensure outstanding provision for all pupils including safeguarding.
  • Outcomes for pupils: To ensure that all pupils and groups of pupils make substantial and sustained progress from their starting point enabling them to exceed expectations.
  • Effectiveness of Early Years Foundation Stage