Academy gets governors’ go-ahead

‘EXCITING’ plans to transform a North Somerset secondary school into an academy have moved a big step closer to reality this week.

Governors at Churchill Community School gave the idea the green light at a meeting last week and headteacher, Dr Barry Wratten, said he is ‘very pleased’ with the decision.

Speaking to parents last month, Dr Wratten said he thought an academy move would be ‘the best show in town’ and he would fully support the transition.

Dr Wratten said: “As I have advocated this strategy I am very pleased the governors have decided to move forward.

“Naturally there are many details to sort out but I am confident we will be able to address any outstanding issues or queries.

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“This exciting development will ensure Churchill’s governors are well placed to continue the school’s journey of improvement, while maintaining its great strengths and unique character.

“The hard work starts here.”

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The school will now officially apply for the change in status and it is hoped it will be an academy before the start of the next academic year.

Dr Wratten stressed the governor-led school would not introduce a student selection process.

He said it would now be given the freedom to consider ‘best fit’ options for staff and its working relationships with other schools and agencies will be strengthened.

He added: “There are still questions to answer - mainly technical questions about the law and governance, but we are now ready to move forward on this and it is hoped we will progress this speedily.”

The school, which is known for having several old and decaying buildings, missed out on funding from the Building Schools for the Future initiative after the scheme was scrapped by the new Coalition Government.

But Dr Wratten said a business plan to ‘repair, refresh and replace’ will now be prepared.

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