You may recall from the governing body letter sent to our school community in the summer, that the Catholic Primary schools within Gloucestershire in the 'Little Way Partnership' were exploring the possibility of forming a multi-academy trust together.
During the Autumn Term we have continued to work together to further develop our thinking, including agreeing our vision for the Trust and our overall approach to ensuring we maintain both our Catholic identify and the high educational standards we enjoy across our schools — supporting each other to be the very best we can be. We also now have a clearer shared understanding of the current financial position for each of the schools, from which we can now start to work together to understand the implications of academy conversion and the opportunities and challenges that this might bring. As we continue to undertake this work into the Spring Term, we wanted to reach out to our community to ensure that your views help to shape the governing board’s response to the opportunity that this presents for us.
One of the first steps required by the Department of Education is that we consult with our community ahead of seeking consent from the Diocese and then the Department for Education to move forward with the proposal. Clearly there is a lot of work for each governing board and the shadow Board of Directors (when appointed in the New Year), to do before these schools make any final decision regarding conversion to academy status. If we are able to secure the necessary provisional approvals from the Diocese and the Department for Education later in the Spring Term, this would release some funding for the maintained schools within the partnership to undertake some of the due diligence and legal work which will form part of the conversion process. It would also mean that we could consider joining the multi-academy trust at the beginning of the new academic year (September 2023).
We therefore would like to invite you to respond to the questions in the questionnaire on the Newsletters page. If you would like this information in another language, large print, braille or audiotape, then please contact the office. The governing body will consider all the responses received before determining whether to go ahead and seek the necessary consents from the Diocese and Department for Education to move to the second stage of forming and joining the Trust. The very final decision regarding this move will take place only once all of the legal and due diligence processes have been completed and when the governors of the Rosary school vote in favour of the move.
In order to provide you with more information, there is a FAQ sheet also on the Newsletters page. We will update parents and carers via the website on the progress in forming the Little Way Catholic Educational Trust. We will also be inviting all members of our school, church and wider community to an online presentation at the school. The date for this will be confirmed soon.
Please can all completed questionnaires be returned to the school office no later than noon on Monday 6 February 2023. Electronic questionnaires can be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org
Mr P. Rush
Chair of Governors