Primary school considers converting to an academy


A Wilmslow primary school is considering converting to academy status and joining a multi-academy trust.

If they decide to go ahead with the proposal, Gorsey Bank would become a converter academy - a successful school which has chosen to be independent from Local Authority control.

Schools with Academy status are publicly funded but operate outside Local Authority control. The Board of Governors would continue to be responsible for the running of the school and approve the decisions made within the school. A Trust would oversee the Board of Governors and the school would continue to work with the local authority in many areas such as admissions.

Funding for academies comes directly from the Government, rather than via the Local Authority, and they benefit from greater freedoms including have greater autonomy over how the funds are spent and being able to decide on how to deliver the curriculum. However, like Maintained Schools they must still follow the law and guidance on Admissions, Exclusions and Special Educational Needs and/or Disabilities.

The Board of Governors will make the decision whether or not Gorsey Bank converts to Academy status following a formal period of consultation with all stakeholders.

In Cheshire East there are 30 academies and a further 13 schools are currently considering conversion.

Gorsey Bank is also considering joining the Cheadle Hulme High School Multi-Academy Trust (MAT). This means they would work in partnership with a group of schools which are governed by one Academy Trust. Each school retains its own Board of Governors in order to continue to make decisions at a local level.

The school feels that being part of a MAT can benefit pupils by: increasing access to teaching resources and expertise; creating professional development opportunities for staff; making savings due to economies of scale when purchasing products, goods and services and improving administration efficiencies, enabling more time to focus on teaching and learning.

Gorsey Bank


Here's what readers have had to say so far. Why not add your thoughts below.

Oliver Romain
Thursday 30th July 2015 at 2:52 pm
The consultation finished a couple of weeks ago. I have a child at the school and also volunteer there. I have spoken to some of the governors and it seems like a good idea.
Michelle Gray
Thursday 30th July 2015 at 3:39 pm
I would urge caution in opting out of local authority control.
To date Cheshire East has had a good track record with special needs provision which is available to all local autority schools, so parents can place their children in any school within the area and be confident that their children's indiviual needs would be catered for.
By choosing Academy status the school would most probably lose the automatic right to expect the inclusion of support from Cheshire East for pupils with diverse educational needs which could become a costly drain on the school's budget
I too had a child attend Gorsey Bank school where she was both a happy and a successful student.
But during my 20 year career as a peripatetic Teacher of the Deaf in a neighbouring local authority I witnessed parental anxiety when children in new Academies had their access to our Service suspended until a financial arrangement was made
Some Academies went one step further by introducing their own unqualified staff to undertake the work of the supporting Services. As a result many of the children's progress slowed down with some changing schools in order to maintain a higher level of education from trained personnel
Children with Special Educational Needs add a great deal to any school but these children may well suffer as a result of a local authority school gaining Academy status