Following recommendations from the Department for Education Toothill Primary School is scheduled to become a Sponsored Academy next spring under the auspices of the Academies Enterprise Trust (AET).
It’s thought to be the first primary in the town to be taken away from the local education authority and placed under the responsibility of external education managers.
In a letter to parents executive headteacher Melanie Sancto said that the school governors have worked closely with the school and the local authority to choose the right sponsoring organisation for Toothill Primary.
Sponsored academies usually come about when schools have been underperforming and the Department of Education determines that action is needed to raise standards and ensure that the children in these schools are able to achieve their full potential.
All schools becoming sponsored primary academies receive £25,000 to cover costs such as legal expenses. In addition, sponsors are able to claim up to a further £40,000 where there is evidence that this is needed to plan for and start to implement action to transform the underperforming school. The Department expects this funding to make a rapid difference in securing improvements.
Where a school faces significant educational problems and requires intensive support from the sponsor and the Department, a greater level of funding is available.
Commenting on the selection of AET as the sponsoring body, chair of governors Julie Nurden said: “This is a positive move for the school. We chose AET for their enthusiasm and their clear vision, allowing Toothill to retain its autonomy and its identity.
“The local councillors Jim Robbins, Kevin Small and Steve Wakefield all came in to meet AET and were very impressed by what they heard. The current governors are looking forward to working with the trust.”
Pictured, governor Jan Milsom, left, and chair of governors Julie Nurden