The Governing Body of Lockyer’s Middle School has applied to become an academy under the Academies Act 2010 and is proposing to join Wimborne Academy Trust. In accordance with the requirements of the Academies Act 2010, the Governing Body is consulting on whether the school’s academy conversion should take place.
Why have the Governing Body made this decision?
• Wimborne Academy Trust has been chosen after careful and thorough consideration of all of the options available to our school.
• Our school will benefit from working collaboratively as part of a strong and established local Multi-Academy Trust.
• Wimborne Academy Trust has a proven track record for school improvement and we believe that our school can contribute to its continuing success.
• The values and ethos of Wimborne Academy Trust are aligned with those of our school.
• The Trust values a broad and balanced curriculum offer across years 5 to 8, whilst ensuring that children
achieve the highest possible academic standards.
Will Lockyer’s Middle School definitely become an Academy?
The Governing Body has submitted an application to convert to academy status and is working towards a conversion in June 2018. However, the school is not obligated to become an academy until the contract between our school, Wimborne Academy Trust and the Department for Education (known as the Funding Agreement) is signed.
The Governing Body and Wimborne Academy Trust will not sign the Funding Agreement until parents and carers of pupils at Lockyer’s Middle School and in years 3 and 4 in our feeder first schools, staff at the school, and pupils themselves have had the opportunity to comment on whether the school’s academy conversion should take place.
Any comments or representations which are made about the proposals will be considered by the Governing Body and Wimborne Academy Trust before a decision is taken to sign the Funding Agreement. Details of how to provide comments and representations are set out below.
The Governing Body and Wimborne Academy Trust will not sign the Funding Agreement unless they are content that conversion would be in the best interests of the school taking account of all of the legal and practical ramifications.
What is an academy?
An academy is essentially an independent school which is funded by the state. It is independent of the local authority and receives its funding direct from central government. It is proposed that Lockyer’s Middle School will become an academy as part of Wimborne Academy Trust. This means that the school will be part of an academy group comprising Allenbourn Middle School, St Michael’s CE Middle School, Emmanuel CE Middle School, Colehill First School, Merley First School, St John’s CE First
School, Hayeswood First School and Witchampton CE First School.
Will the admissions arrangements change?
The current admission arrangements will remain in place. If the academy wanted to change its admission arrangements consultation would be required.
Will staff leave?
If the school converts to an academy, all staff currently employed by the Local Authority will automatically transfer to the new academy on their current pay and conditions. Although the academy will have more freedom to amend those pay and conditions in the future, the Governing Body does not intend to take such a step in the foreseeable future and in any event, any change to pay and conditions would need to be consulted
upon with staff representatives.
Will Lockyer’s Middle School change?
We do not intend to change Lockyer’s Middle School except in ways which we think will improve the school even more. We intend to continue to work closely with our feeder first schools and our local upper school. For pupils, it is unlikely that they will see much, if any, change in their day to day school lives. Academies do have the power to vary their curriculum and vary the length of the school day; however, it is not intended to take
any such steps at this stage and would engage with parents/carers, staff and students if we did ever intend to make such changes in the future.
How can I make representations or ask a question?
To respond to this consultation representations can be made in writing to:
Mr E.S. Battey, Chair of Governing Body, Lockyer’s Middle School Blandford Road, Corfe Mullen, Wimborne, Dorset BH21 3HQ
or by email to: email@example.com
The closing date for representations to be made is Thursday 29th March 2018.
If as a result of this consultation the Governing Body make the decision to proceed an information evening will be held early in the Summer Term.