A borough high school has announced that it will be converting to academy status following a successful consultation period.
As of yesterday (August 1), Westleigh High is part of the Shaw Education Trust, a growing multi-academy trust which provides quality education across all phases, all sectors and all communities.
Speaking of the change, Carlton Bramwell, Headteacher of the school, said: “By becoming an academy we will have more power to decide our own future. It is an exciting period of change and provides us with a valuable opportunity to further develop positive outcomes for our pupils.”
Joining the Shaw Education Trust means the school has access to the expertise required to improve, as well as numerous staff and pupil opportunities, such as training courses and collaborative work with other schools in the Trust.
The Trust, which currently has 10 schools across the country, are excited to welcome Westleigh into its family, and look forward to further developing the aspirations and achievements of pupils at the school.
Mr Bramwell commented: “We don’t want any child to miss out on being the best they can be and the Shaw Education Trust’s expertise will help us on our journey to achieving this.
“The Trust’s values are well aligned with our own and I feel they are the best fit in terms of providing the skills to move the school forward so that all our young people benefit.”
To outwardly demonstrate the school’s new beginning, the school name will change as part of the conversion process. As proud members of the local community, staff, and the Trust, felt it was important that ‘Westleigh’ remains at the heart of the school’s name; therefore, as of August, the school will be known as ‘The Westleigh School’.
To support the school’s fresh start, a new uniform will be introduced. The school’s current uniform was designed in 1976 and Westleigh staff, pupils and parents believe it is time for a uniform that belongs to children of a new era, rather than one that is defined by the past.
Following a positive consultation with parents, a smart grey uniform will be implemented as of September. This new, professional-looking uniform, will represent all the good things that Westleigh means today as a progressive school in a modern age.
In reference to the involvement of parents, pupils and staff with these changes, Mr Bramwell said: “We believe that the people who live and work, and were often born and raised in this area, are well placed to influence what our school wants and needs.”
With the new academic year fast approaching, both the Trust and school are busy preparing for the conversion. Jo Morgan, CEO of the Shaw Education Trust, said: “The school will remain at the heart of its community, and its community will remain the heartbeat of the school.
“Westleigh pupils will be nurtured, supported and challenged to become the very best versions of themselves. The Trust’s wraparound support, and continued partnership with the Local Authority, will accelerate awesome opportunities for success by delivering high quality education for all young people at The Westleigh School.”