Outwood Academy Hindley: Wigan secondary school joins one of the leading trusts in the country

A Wigan secondary school is looking forward to an exciting future after becoming an academy and joining one of the leading trusts in the country.

Wednesday, 5th January 2022, 12:27 pm
Updated Wednesday, 5th January 2022, 3:10 pm
Outwood Grange Academies Trust

Outwood Academy Hindley, formerly Hindley High School, has officially opened its doors to students as part of Outwood Grange Academies Trust.

The academy was rated as Inadequate by Ofsted following an inspection in March 2020. Subsequently it was issued with a Directive Academy Order (DAO) by the Regional Schools Commissioner (RSC) on behalf of the Department for Education.

Outwood Grange Academies Trust was selected as the preferred sponsor by the Regional Schools Commissioner.

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Since then the school has been on a journey of rapid improvement as a result of close collaboration between Hindley’s existing senior leadership team and Outwood Grange Academies Trust.

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The swift improvements were recognised by Ofsted in a monitoring visit in February 2021.

The academy will be led by Mrs Jude Norman, who is the acting headteacher at Hindley High School.

Mrs Norman will work alongside Outwood’s Julie Slater, Chief Executive Principal Secondary, and Cara Ackroyd, Associate Executive Principal.

Mrs Norman said: “This is a very exciting time for both our school and our school community and we are delighted to become a part of the Outwood family.

“Working with Outwood represents a brilliant opportunity for Hindley as the Trust has a track record of not only transforming schools, but also the local communities they serve.

“As we embark on this exciting next chapter in our school’s journey, I would like to thank our students, their parents/carers, our hardworking staff and IEB members and every member of our academy community for their patience during this process.”

Outwood had been working with Hindley High School for some time as it prepared for the conversion, laying the groundwork for a smooth transition.

Cara Ackroyd, Associate Executive Principal at Outwood, added: “Working with the school ahead of the conversion has been a great experience and we are grateful for the warm reception we have received.

“The school has a vast amount of potential and we are determined to put students first and work hard to raise standards and transform lives.”

Outwood Academy Hindley is one of two Outwood academies opening this month, with Outwood Academy Haydock also opening in St Helens.

Julie Slater added: “I am so excited for the journey we are embarking on, not just with the staff and students, but also the wider community. I’m from the North West and I know this area well.

“It feels like I’m coming home and the warm reception we’ve received in the borough makes me more determined to bring success to Hindley.

“As such, we will do everything we can to help to ensure the students at the school receive the best possible educationand that everyone strives to fulfil their potential.”

The conversion has been positively received in the local community and beyond.

Carrie Murphy, who has a child attending Outwood Academy Hindley, said: “I love what Outwood has brought to Hindley and how it’s all about the students being happy.

“They have positive rewards systems such as Proud Thursday and Praising Stars reports to give the students an incentive to try harder to achieve their full potential.”

“The enrichment timetable that is in place for the students to get extra help after school is amazing along with the chance for the students to have their voices heard through the student council that has been put in place.”

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