Following Laurence Jackson School’s Ofsted inspection in February 2019, the Department for Education believe that the best way for the School to make rapid and sustained improvement is by becoming a sponsored academy. Vision Academy Learning Trust are delighted to have been designated the sponsors for Laurence Jackson School. The school will therefore become a sponsored Academy on 1 January 2020, as part of the Vision Academy Learning Trust, led by Egglescliffe School located in Stockton.
Vision Academy Learning Trust is very keen to work with parents and carers, as we work with Laurence Jackson School to transform the quality of education into an outstanding school worthy of the children entrusted to our care. Education is about developing the whole person and ensuring that every aspect of a child’s schooling provides them with challenge, affirmation and opportunities to celebrate. It is about shaping the futures and fulfilling the dreams of our young people; and I hope that you will support both the Trust and the school as we work together to realise this ambition for Laurence Jackson School.
We are looking forward to demonstrating how joining the Vision Academy Learning Trust will help to shape a strong and positive future for Laurence Jackson School, and how working in collaboration with the other schools within the Trust will provide benefits to children and families across all of our schools, including Laurence Jackson School. Representatives from Vision Academy Learning Trust will hold a meeting at 4pm on Monday 21 October 2019, at Laurence Jackson School. We are keen to meet parents and members of the local community to offer an overview of the Trust, our school improvement and how working together with Laurence Jackson we can bring benefits for the school and the children.
We have set out in this letter some of the ways the partnership will work to help every child succeed.
What is an academy?
Academies are publicly funded, self-governing schools for children of all abilities. Academy status gives schools freedom to be innovative and creative with the curriculum, timetabling, staffing and governance. All Academies will be inspected by Ofsted, and comply with the same rules as other schools on special educational needs, exclusions and admissions.
About Vision Academy Learning Trust
Vision Academy Learning Trust was established on 1 August 2015 by Egglescliffe School, which is currently judged to be Outstanding by Ofsted. In recent years, Egglescliffe School has attained results above those nationally in terms of GCSE results.
The Vision Academy Learning Trust Board of Directors is ultimately responsible for the schools within the partnership and accountable to the Department for Education providing visionary strategic leadership, a focus on continuous improvement, high quality governance and a strong inclusive ethos with a caring and supportive culture. The Trust’s Schools include Egglescliffe School, Chandlers Ridge Academy, Junction Farm Primary School, The Links Primary School and Whinstone Primary School.
The CEO and Head Teacher of Egglescliffe School is also a National Leader for Education and has strong links with the National College for Teaching and Leadership and has supported a number of schools in their improvement journey.
This is an exciting time for all the schools involved and we are eagerly anticipating the opportunities that will be opened up as result of being part of the Trust.
Our Vision, Values and Ethos
The Trust’s aim is to build upon the existing strengths of the partnership with Laurence Jackson School and to offer “outstanding” education provision so that every child succeeds and reaches their potential.
As a Trust we value close working support and relations with parents and carers.
What are the main benefits for schools within the Vision Academy Learning Trust?
- Access to top quality staff, including an “outstanding” Trust leadership team who are sharply focussed on securing excellence.
- Moderation of standards across the partnership of schools to ensure the highest quality provision.
- Greater control over finances and the money due to schools.
- Educational benefits for students as a result of additional freedoms available to academies in terms of the curriculum we offer, and how we prioritise resources.
- The opportunity to work in close and formalised partnership with other schools and share expertise and services that will benefit all our students and staff.
- Sharing resources and expertise, allows us to target funding towards improving front line teaching and learning.
- Joining up provision to remove barriers to learning.
- Develop our own solutions collaboratively.
“Our aim is to inspire the imaginations of our students and to support them to develop in ways which stand them in good stead for their future lives and responsibilities as individuals, employees and citizens”.
The Vision Academy Learning Trust Board will provide strong and effective governance to all of the schools in the Trust including Laurence Jackson School. We intend to work with the Department for Education and our advisers to ensure that governance supports our ambition that Laurence Jackson School becomes an outstanding school.
Will admissions arrangements change?
There no current plans to change the admissions criteria.
When would the school change to become an Academy?
We are aiming for 1st January 2020.
What does it mean for staff at the school?
All staff have the right to transfer their employment under TUPE legislation from their current employer, the Governing Body, to Vision Academy Learning Trust. We will keep staff updated and offering reassurance that terms and conditions will remain in line with nationally and locally agreed pay and conditions as approved nationally.
How will it affect my child’s education?
Vision Academy Learning Trust, as sponsor, is tasked with ensuring that every student at Laurence Jackson School achieves his or her full potential. It is our intention to review the curriculum and introduce any key changes necessary to the curriculum from September 2020 in order to improve the educational experience for every child. We are also wholly committed to improving the quality of teaching and learning and providing staff with the best professional development.
Will there be any curriculum changes?
The Vision Academy Learning Trust Team and the staff at Laurence Jackson School will work together to develop a curriculum that will be fit for purpose and be broad and balanced so that all children can have a clear pathway to success. It is vital that the curriculum provides personalised opportunities and supports rapid improvement.
Will the school continue to have a Specialism?
Specialisms are no longer recognised by the Department of Education as all key curriculum areas are valued in their own right and all children should be able to access a balanced programme of study. However, we recognise the important influence of sport and sports college status at Laurence Jackson School and will continue to support, value and develop this aspect of the school.
What will happen to the uniform?
There will be no changes to the uniform.
Will the name of the school change?
The school will continue to be known as Laurence Jackson School.
Will the times of the school day and holidays change?
There are no plans to change the times of the school day or the term dates. Any future changes would be subject to extensive consultation with parents and carers.
Vision Academy Learning Trust and the Laurence Jackson teams will be talking to the students about the exciting opportunities on offer as a result of joining Vision Academy Learning Trust.
Chief Executive Officer
Vision Academy Learning Trust