Termly update to Parents /Carers

Neville Coles – Executive Principal
The Priory Learning Trust – STUDENTS FIRST

As is in the norm at the start of each term, I like to write a short piece from The Priory Learning Trust (TPLT) about recent events and progress – the start of T6 is no different.

As our parents and carers – thank you for your continued great support.

We really do want open communication between academies / schools and our parental body. Please be aware that all schools within TPLT – and the two new schools who are shortly to join – The King Alfred School, Highbridge and Pawlett Primary – have social media accounts – Twitter and Facebook.

Please do use these as a means of keeping in more immediate touch with the events at the academies and schools, if you so wish.We use social media as a way of celebrating success alongside our newsletters and websites. Please be aware that social media is not really to be used for individual communication and individual need.

It is much better to e-mail directly to the schools / academies who will respond as a matter of urgency to any individual request. In fact, we pride ourselves in getting back to parents and carers very quickly. Should you not receive an email in the appropriate time frame please do contact me personally at neville.coles@theplt.org.uk.

We certainly would not claim to get everything right first time but we are extremely passionate about great customer service and providing swift replies to parents / carers as soon as is possible. I hope this has been your experience. We will also continue to ensure our Friday ‘phone calls’ happen across all secondary schools; we have a very healthy praise and rewards culture. Indeed, am very pleased to see that WCSA are further increasing the use of ‘reward badges’ for blazers this term.

Great to see these being worn on uniforms with pride.The Term 6 update comes as the SATS and the GCSE exams have started and, of course, in the case of SATS, completed. Well done to all our wonderful Year 6s and their teachers and support staff. Our little Year 2s also did some tests as well (!) – very early to have tests (in my view); very well-handled by our primary schools – well done Y2.  It was really fantastic to be able to reward our Y6s and their teachers with a delicious ice cream at the end of the SATS week.

Many of the Year 6 children, from schools such as Castle Batch, St Anne’s and Pawlett, will be transferring this summer into TPLT secondary schools at The King Alfred School, Priory and Worle. We wish them well. Transition is now planned and coordinated much better through being a Multi Academy Trust. The joined-up work of Lisa Dadds (Head at St Anne’s) Emma Hardy-Smith (Head at Pawlett) and Vicky Dupras (Head at Castle Batch), alongside their secondary colleagues, in making transition better will be instrumental in the coming months. 

Secondary staff and primary staff are now working much more closely together for the benefit of all.We are delighted to announce that the number of new Year 7s at Worle for this coming year is now at 297. This is the biggest intake for some time. Likewise, at Priory there will be 300 new students joining Year 7. In fact, Priory had a huge 377 first choice applications; I will be going to an ‘appeals process’ for places at Priory in the coming months.

We are delighted to welcome this number of students into the Trust in our WSM 11-16 academies. It is very likely that by April 2019 we will have 4,723 students within the Trust. Thank you for your continued support for the local academies in our Trust within the North Somerset and Somerset region. As a central Trust team we continue to provide a great deal of support to each academy. We are now able to have a Director of Science (Miss Criddle), a Director of Maths (Mrs. Goddard-Lock) and a Director of Careers Education (Mr. Wilmot) working across all the academies.

There is also a fabulous team of support staff assisting the Principals, Leaders and staff each day.  Our ‘Director of Careers Education’ is a new post – we think it is so important to ensure we have great careers education, guidance and advice across all our academies. So… everyone is working extremely hard to ensure our results are in the top 10% of results across the UK. Results will tell in the summer; we certainly believe that by working together in this way, through a MAT, we are much stronger. STRONGER TOGETHER.

During the summer break, there will be a new student toilet facility built at Worle. At the same time, we will be completing the major building works at PCSA. The work at PCSA is to accommodate the new student number of 300 on entry. In the due course of time capital improvement projects will be started at Castle Batch, The King Alfred School and St Anne’s. In fact, we are delighted to say that we have received £1.2million of funding to improve the roofs at The King Alfred School, Highbridge. Great news alongside the appointment of a new Principal at TKAS – Mr. Nathan Jenkins. We hope Nathan will start with TPLT in July.

If any parent has any questions or wishes to learn more about TPLT please do contact me or John Richardson (Trust Board Chair) directly on our e-mail accounts.

We are very interested in hearing from any parent / member of the public who might like to join us as either trustees or as part of an academy’s Academy Council (local governing body).
Again, please do contact me should you wish to hear more about this part of the Trust.

Please do look at the Trust website at:
Twitter @nevillecoles