Sandy schools plan bid to stay three tier

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Three schools in Sandy are planning to get SMArT with a multi academy trust.

Laburnum Lower School, Maple Tree Lower School and Sandye Place Academy sent letters out to parents last week setting out plans for a public consultation to become a trust.

The schools are also planning a series of drop in session to answer queries from parents.

The consultation document sets out the schools’ plans to stay three tier, setting them at odds with four other Sandy schools which plan to go for the two tier system.

Robert Peel Lower, St Swithuns Lower and Moggerhanger Lower, and Sandy Upper School, all part of The Pinnacle Trust, sent out letters before the summer holidays regarding their bid to become primary schools.

Those aiming to stay with the three tier system have set up SMArT - Sandy Multi Academy regional Trust.

In the consultation document they state: “We believe strongly in the benefits that the three tier systen offers in developing the whole child. It is this approach that has underpinned this proposal to form a multi academy trust.”

It goes on to state: “Through lengthy discussions between all the schools involved in the Pinnacle Trust it has become clear that there are two different visions for the future of education within the Sandy and Potton area.”

The trust bid would see the three schools work closer together and Laburnum and Maple would convert to academies.

There are no plans to change the age ranges or staff structures of any of the schools and the names and identities, including uniform, would stay the same.

A chief executive officer would be appointed to oversee the educational and operational running of the new academies within the trust but the existing senior leadership team structure of each school would stay the same.

The governors of the three schools believe cost savings and efficiences can be made by sharing resources at a time when education budgets are being squeezed.

Earlier this year a Sandy councillor, Nigel Aldis, warned that the plans by schools to be either three or two tier could create chaos in the town.

The drop in dates for the three schools are as follows.

>Drop in at Laburnum Lower School - 2-6pm, Monday 19th September

Drop in at Sandye Place Academy - 5-8pm, Wednesday 28th September

Drop in at Maple Tree Lower School - 8.30-11am, Tuesday 4th October