Much has happened since I took on the Chair of Governors role in September 2015. In my last message I outlined my main priorities:
– To develop a strong working relationship with Mr Barrett and his team
– To appoint a permanent Headteacher, ready to take up post September 2016
– To strengthen the governing body and help implement additional approaches to make governance effective at all levels
– To effectively monitor the school post Ofsted action plan
– To support the objectives of The Athelstan Trust
I believe governors have developed a strong working relationship with the senior team at the school. In September, Mr Beveridge will be leading the school and Mr Barrett will be in a supporting capacity for two days a week. This reinforces the full commitment The Athelstan Trust has made to The Dean Academy as both Mr Beveridge and Mr Barrett have come from the senior team at Malmesbury School – the sponsoring school at the centre of The Athelstan Trust. We have already had time with Mr Beveridge and I am confident that the strong relationship we have established will continue to grow.
When I joined as a governor we had five active governors on the governing board. Since September, we have recruited eight new governors who represent parents, our community and the staff at school. As a governing board, we now have a wide range of skills and all of us are committed in our roles to support the school in all areas of governance. Over the coming months we will continue to recruit and aim to have a full complement of sixteen governors by the end of the autumn term.
In May, the Ofsted monitoring team came to the school for two days. I am pleased to say that they were able to identify that the school is making progress. They recognised that the work that we are doing at a governance level in holding the Headteacher and the senior team to account. We will continue in our work in this area and hope that when the monitoring team return next academic year they will see further improvement.
The objectives of The Athelstan Trust are:
• Raising educational standards for all schools within the Trust
• Delivering an excellent, comprehensive education for all the children in the schools within the Trust
• Developing and valuing all the staff within the Trust
• Ensuring the financial security of the Trust and all the schools within it
I believe in these objectives and am certain that The Dean Academy will improve and thrive with the support of The Athelstan Trust over the coming years. This first year has been a year of significant change and placing the right leadership team in place and supporting staff through a comprehensive development programme so they are confident in the classroom has been critical.
There is, however, much more to do. Next year we will be working hard to move the school out of special measures and supporting the staff across the school to help raise expectations so that all students are engaged and aspirational. Central to this work are the core values of the school:
• We aim for excellence and innovation in teaching and learning
• We are inclusive and collaborative and promote a culture of openness
• We promote trust, honesty and respect of self, others and the environment
• We provide a safe and supportive environment which promotes resilience and courage
These core values are whole school values and ones that all governors are committed to.
Please contact me via the school if there is anything that you would like to discuss with governors.
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