5th September 2016
Bradford Diocesan Academies Trust (BDAT) starts the new academic year by opening two further secondary academies in Bradford.
Both Buttershaw Business and Enterprise College and Belle Vue Girls Academy have been working in close partnership with the Academy chain throughout the last academic year, with a targeted joining date of September 2016. The latest two conversions complete the Trust’s previously published ambition of growing their family of schools to nine open academies.
Mary Copeland, Head Teacher at Belle Vue Girls Academy explains the rationale for moving from a stand-alone Academy to join the multi-academy trust, “Governors took a resolution to join BDAT earlier in the year as we recognised the importance and benefits of collaboration and local schools supporting each other. As a strong school, rated as good by Ofsted, we have the expertise and capacity to make a real difference within a Trust and see this purpose as part of what we can offer to young people across Bradford. Joining BDAT will allow greater partnership working between the four secondary academies within the Trust, enabling continuous improvements, cross-learning and providing development opportunities for all our staff.”
The successful Academy which converted in 2012 will remain a non-Church of England all-girls school and a specialist academy for languages and science with maths.
Buttershaw Business and Enterprise College opens as a new academy from September 2016 having previously been an LA maintained school. The school which was judged to require special measures in 2015 has already seen significant benefit from working with other schools in BDAT with over 90% of subjects seeing better outcomes for students in 2016.
Richard Hughes, Head teacher of Buttershaw spoke of his delight at the improved performance and move to Academy status. “Opening the school year as an improving Academy with stronger GCSE and A-level results is a fantastic start to the Buttershaw school year. It has taken a lot of hard work and determination from staff, students, governors and BDAT to get us to this point. Moving forward we will continue to focus on driving up standards working in a secure partnership with our colleagues in other BDAT schools so that our students get the very best education together we can offer”.
BDAT is a multi-academy Trust set up to support and sponsor schools across Bradford. The Trust has always set a commitment to work with both Church of England and non-Church of England academies, valuing the diversity and unique identity of each member academy. Buttershaw and Belle Vue join Immanuel College and Bradford Forster Academy to make up the secondary quartet of the Trust. The Trust also sponsors five primary schools within the local authority.
BDAT set an ambitious target to move from 3 open academies to 9 in 2015-16 believing two small clusters of 4-5 schools to be a manageable operational model. The Trust has no further secondary conversion plans at present although does envisage a small number of additional primaries joining throughout 2016-17 as part of a managed and phased growth plan. Most recently St James Church of England primary school was issued an Academy order to join BDAT and governors at St Johns Church of England primary school in Bierley have also taken a resolution to consult with the intention of conversion in this academic year.
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