Message from the Chair, Sara Lipscombe

This multi-academy trust was established In September 2013 at the request of Surrey County Council and the Department for Education to improve educational standards at Jubilee High School, a mixed comprehensive secondary school in Addlestone, Surrey. This partnership has been extremely successful with the school being graded as good in all areas by Ofsted in July 2015.

Since the establishment of the Bourne Education Trust, five further schools have joined the Trust. Sythwood Primary School joined as the Trust’s primary strategic partner to oversee its work in the primary sector. Sythwood Primary School supports the two primary sponsored academies within the Trust, Pyrcroft Grange Primary School and Sayes Court Primary School. Pyrcroft Grange Primary School’s OFSTED grading is currently ‘requires improvement’ and Sayes Court Primary School is in special measures. The former has made significant progress over the last academic year and we are confident that it will achieve at least a ‘good’ outcome in the next inspection. The latter still requires support to raise its standards but is now rapidly improving.

Since September 2014 we have been supporting The Matthew Arnold School in Staines. The school went into special measures in July 2014. It joined the Trust in December 2014. It came out of category in March 2016 and is on course to be graded as a good school by 2018.

Furthermore, the Trust successfully submitted a free school application in partnership with Salesian School to build a new secondary school in Surrey on the site of the Runnymede Centre. The new school is due to open in September 2017 and is called Chertsey High School. Salesian School is also supporting the Trust’s work at The Matthew Arnold School and is now the Trust’s secondary strategic partner. However, it sits outside the Trust in terms of legal accountability and financial reporting. A partnership agreement exists between the two parties to formalise the relationship.

The Trust aims to enable Surrey schools from any phase to secure their future as academies. Greater autonomy for schools should not, in our view, mean greater isolation. As the educational landscape is changing at an unprecedented pace, leading in particular to a marked reduction in the role and capacity of local authorities, the Trust aims to provide a supportive and collaborative context in which our schools can continue to thrive into the future.

That support takes many forms. Schools are first and foremost for education, so it is right that at the heart of what we do is a focus on school improvement, staff development, and enabling our young people to excel. We support schools in meeting the challenges of rising expectations through mutually supportive intervention and training. Secondly, the Trust works to support each school in ensuring that it has secure and robust financial and resource management, so that schools meet their statutory responsibilities. And thirdly, we support schools in the nurturing of the distinctive ethos which contributes so powerfully to the development of our pupils as rounded and balanced young people poised to make a contribution to society.

The ethos of the Trust is collaborative and participative. Every individual school has a voice, though the Trust’s open and transparent governance, in the key decisions which affect each school. Moreover, the Trust aims to value the healthy diversity which exists in our schools, and we actively encourage each school which decides to join the Trust to maintain and further develop its own distinctive culture and identity.

I hope that that pages which follow give you a clearer idea of the way in which the Trust puts these objectives into practice.

Sara Lipscombe