The Governing Body of Chesterton Primary School is proposing to convert the school to an academy and is now consulting with parents, carers and other stakeholders as it is legally required to do under the Academies Act 2010. We hope to have answered many of your questions in the FAQs section, but if you have any questions that are not covered please do use the online form at this link to contact us. You can also read the letter about the proposal that has been sent to all parents and carers - MAT Consultation Letter 18.9.17.pdf
We believe academy conversion is in the best long-term interests of the school and our pupils for the following reasons:
Chesterton Primary School is judged by Ofsted to be an Outstanding school. This has been achieved through the school working hard alongside parents for many years to meet the needs of pupils and families. If we become an academy this will not change. We will keep the same ethos of hard work, opportunity and high aspirations for all pupils.
As a maintained school we are funded directly by the Local Authority and have enjoyed a strong relationship with them. However, to continue to provide the quality of education that we do we have to adapt to new circumstances and changing political priorities.
More and more schools within Wandsworth are becoming academies and as a result the level of support and services that the Local Authority can provide is reducing. We think it's right that we consider what opportunities are available to secure the successful future of Chesterton.
As an academy we would have full control over how money is spent within our school. We would focus spending where it is needed most – on teaching and learning. Being a member of a multi-academy trust (which we have explained below) means that we can share specialist teachers and resources between schools. This is especially important at a time when many schools are struggling to find the right teachers, or fund all the equipment they may need, for their pupils.
Becoming an academy and joining a multi-academy trust also means we can work as a group to buy things we need for pupils and the school, which should mean we can get better value for money than if we are working as a single school.
The Government's preference is for all schools to be academies, and to work as part of multi-academy trusts (these are charitable organisations set up to run and support groups of academies).
At Chesterton we are very fortunate that we already have a strong working relationship with the Chestnut Grove Academy, who we propose to form a multi-academy trust with. This will be called The Wandle Learning Trust and will include governors and Trustees from both schools on its governing board.
There will only be two academies in the Trust to start with – ourselves and Chestnut Grove – and over time we anticipate that other local schools will choose to convert to academy status and join the Trust.