On March 1st 2018, St Cleer Primary became St Cleer Primary Academy. We have been warmly welcomed into the Bridge Schools Multi Academy Trust, and are benefitting from working with the other local like-minded schools which already belong to the Trust.
The Governing Body and Staff at St Cleer took the decision to apply to become an Academy after much research and discussion over several years. We looked at various Trusts in Cornwall before deciding upon the Bridge Schools Trust, basing our decision on the school improvement and support on offer.
You can find out more about the Bridge Schools Multi-Academy Trust by visiting https://www.bridgeschools.co.uk
The other schools in the Trust are:
Darite Primary Academy, Wadebridge Primary Academy, Blisland Primary Academy, Trenode Primary Academy, Looe Primary Academy, Delaware Primary Academy, Gunnislake Primary Academy, Brunel Primary & Nursery Academy, Pelynt Primary Academy, Polruan Primary Academy, Polperro Primary Academy, and Lanlivery Primary Academy.
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.
What are the benefits of being an academy?
In the schools’ opinion the benefits are numerous:
- Academies are independent of local authority control – this means that academies have more freedom about how they conduct themselves
- Academies receive their funding direct from central government – this means that academies receive more funding because none is retained by the local authority for the provision of central services
- Academies have more freedom over the curriculum taught – this means that academies do not need to teach parts of the National Curriculum which they do not consider appropriate for their pupils
- Academies can set their own pay and conditions of service for their staff – academies have the freedom to alter the pay and conditions of their staff (subject to normal employment law protections for staff) and so can provide staff with better pay and conditions than previously
- Academies have more freedom to undertake innovative projects – academies are companies and so have more freedom to undertake innovative projects, such as setting up and utilising trading subsidiaries.
What are the benefits of joining a Multi-Academy Trust?
Being part of a group of like-minded Primary schools has many benefits:
- It is encouraged to share ideas and best practice amongst the schools and offer support and assistance to each other.
- A group of schools can achieve better value for money as it has more buying power than a single school.
- A Multi-Academy Trust offers all the freedoms enjoyed by a single academy but with the security of being more financially secure as a group.
- A wider range of knowledge and expertise can be found in a group of schools and shared to the benefit of all schools.
- Individual schools all offer different experiences for their pupils, within a Multi-Academy Trust these opportunities can be offered to all pupils therefore giving them a much broader education.
- A Multi-Academy Trust is in a position to offer benefits to staff, such as health and wellbeing packages or ride-to-work schemes.
- A group of schools can apply for a wide range of funding opportunities that may not be available to single schools.