The Governing Bodies of Cockburn School, Hugh Gaitskell Primary School, Middleton Primary School, Beeston Primary and Westwood Primary School have changed school category from a community school to a foundation school and have acquired a charitable trust status to be called The Learning Trust (South Leeds). The date of implementation was 1st July 2011. Our schools supported by the Trust will work to improve attainment and develop services to improve standards, outcomes and services for children, young people and their families in our local communities.
ANNUAL OVERVIEW OF THE TRUST 2012 - 2013
The Trust accounts have been checked by the Headteachers Group and the Trust Secretary, and although at the time they were dormant, they were passed as true and accurate, enabling financial returns to be made to the Tax Office. The annual report for 2011/12 was also forwarded to Companies House, in line with legal requirements.
During the course of the year negotiations began with the staff of Beeston Primary School, concerning the school joining the Trust. These meetings were attended by Peter Nuttall and Sam Williams. This school become a full member of the Trust on 31st August, 2012. This means that there are two new Trustees, the Headteacher and the Chair of the Governing Body.
The set –up of the Trust Priority Groups was altered, with attendance now being joined up with the Beeston Middleton and Cottingley Cluster, so that all data is managed by the cluster staff, and the Early Years Group became mainly a networking group, which does not necessarily report back to the Trust on a formal basis.
Good progress continues to be made by most of the Priority Groups and they are in the main hitting the targets that they set themselves. (These are overseen by the Headteachers’ Group, which meets in the week after the Priority Groups have met, so that targets can be examined and progress checked). There were 8 priorities in all, each of which was looking to improve standards in the Priority Group’s particular area of responsibility
None of the schools in the Trust is any longer in a category, having been inspected over the last 12 months.
The Trust continues to work closely with Leeds Ahead to develop work related activities in its partner primary schools, and Trustees may be interested to know that the Trust will also be working with Sainsbury’s, as one of their partners for the academic year 2013/14. A new partner in the last 12 months has been UK General, whose head office is in south Leeds.
A significant development was the decision of the Trust to enter a competition, held by Leeds City Council, to build a new primary school on the site of the South Leeds Sports Centre. The result of this was successful, with the Trust winning the bid, and the first interim Governing Body meeting was held yesterday (3rd June). This new Trust school will open in September 2014, although the building will not be ready until the following year. In the meantime, the pupils will be based at Cockburn, in a temporary building on the school site.
Although all the buildings and land belonging to the partner schools was transferred to the Trust on its formation on the 1st July 2011, Leeds City Council has yet to prepare the necessary paperwork formalising this, and at present shows no signs of so doing.
The staff of all the schools remain enthusiastic about the Trust, although it is felt that a fairly narrow number of senior and middle leaders is involved. Hopefully a more effective method of sharing progress with all staff will be decided upon within the new Trust Development Plan.
The Trustees would like to thank those companies and schools for the hard work and commitment they have shown over the last academic year.