Nottingham’s pioneering schools model goes from strength to strength

Here, Councillor Sam Webster, Portfolio Holder for Business, Education and Skills, gives his thoughts about the recently-launched Nottingham Schools Trust…

In September 2017 we helped to launch the Nottingham Schools Trust, a groundbreaking new model for local schools to work together, share resources and drive improvements by cooperation and collaboration. This unique structure – one of the first of its kind in the country – is made up of 30 local schools, enabling maintained community schools and standalone academies to join together in a not-for-profit organisation.

The Trust is not restricted to Council-maintained schools. Of the 30 member schools, three are standalone academies and a further three are schools for children with special educational needs. Since the launch, more schools have expressed an interest in joining and Foxwood Academy, a special school in Bramcote, recently became the newest member school – and the first member school outside the Nottingham City boundary.

The member schools are:

Bentinck Primary School

Berridge Primary School

Cantrell Primary School

Carrington Primary School

Dovecote Primary School

Fernwood Primary School

Forest Fields Primary School

Foxwood Academy

Glade Hill Primary School

Greenfields Community School

Haydn Primary School

Heathfield Primary School

Hempshill Hall Primary School

Henry Whipple Primary School

Hospital and Home Education and Learning Centre

Melbury Primary School

Mellers Primary School

Milford Academy

Oak Field School & Sports College

Old Basford Primary School

Rise Park Primary School

Robin Hood Primary School

Rufford Primary School

Seely Primary School

Snape Wood Primary School

Southglade Primary School

Southwold Primary School

Walter Halls Primary School

Welbeck Primary School

Westglade Primary School

Alongside some of our local Teaching School Alliances, the Nottingham Schools Trust has been successful at bidding for additional national funding to support school improvement.

The success of many of the member schools is one of the reasons that Nottingham City now has the highest proportion of outstanding schools in the region.

The underlying aims of the Trust are to collaborate, participate and respond to the needs of children across Nottingham. Every school, as a member, has a voice in the decision-making process, through the Trust’s open and transparent governance. Moreover, the Trust values the diversity which exists in member schools and actively encourages each school joining the Trust to maintain and further develop its own distinctive culture and identity.

Since Nottingham City Council gave the go-ahead for the establishment of the Trust, the number of new Academy conversions has fallen to zero, helping to protect the community status of many of our local schools. There has also been a great deal of interest from other areas of the country where there is a desire to introduce a similar model – run by schools, for schools, in the interests of local children.

More information about Nottingham Schools Trust can be found here: nottinghamschoolstrust.org.uk 

Councillor Sam Webster, Portfolio Holder for Business, Education and Skills, Nottingham City Council

Twitter: @cllrsamwebster

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