24th January 2016
Following Mrs Swaffield's announcement yesterday, governors would like to express our thanks to her for her relentless enthusiasm and resilience as she has led our hardworking team of teaching and support staff to move the school from 'Special measures' to 'Good' in less than18 months. We're confident in her commitment to continue this great work through to her retirement at the end of the academic year. Now the responsibility is ours to find a new, inspirational leader to begin as Headteacher in September 2017.
This evening we met to agree the Job Description and Person Specification for our new Headteacher. This is a key stage in our recruitment process, as we seek to attract the very best candidates for the role. We have appointed an educational consultant, Peter Haddon (Headteacher at Holywell Middle School in Cranfield), to work with us during this very important time.
Tonight Peter helped us think through the key competencies that will help us recruit the right person to continue taking GIA on its journey to an Outstanding school. Needless to say this involved some really thought provoking discussion (as well as a lot of coloured post-it notes!), and we're now ready to finalise some of the important information that will be provided to applicants. The vacancy will be advertised at the beginning of Feburary.
9th December 2016
We're continuing our work towards the formation of a Multi-Academy Trust (MAT), with Vandyke and Brooklands schools. The MAT has now been given its name: THE OUZEL LEARNING TRUST. Our application and all the necessary follow-up documentation has been sent to the Department for Education, and we must now wait to see if our application has been approved or whether more information will be required. We'll be surprised if no more information is requested, as these processes are not noted for being particularly quick! Nevertheless, provided there is nothing which arises to cause problems, or to give the governing boards of the schools reason to re-consider the situation (which is now highly doubtful), we are hopeful that the MAT will come into being from the 1st of September 2017. General approval has been received regarding the memberships of both the Trustee Board and the Members Board of the Trust.
Following the parent's consultation we've put together some frequently asked questions; please do let us know if there are any further questions you'd like us to answer.
1st December 2016
Tonight we held our termly Full Governing Body meeting and we were joined by Nick Cudmore of Duncan and Toplis, who presented the Academy's end of year accounts. The Resources Committe is responsible for overseeing the financial management of the school, and had already studied the accounts in detail at their last meeting, so this was a chance for the rest of the governing body to be given an explanation of the school's financial position. We were pleased that a small surplus was reported, despite the challenging financial climate, and the accounts were signed off by the Head Teacher and Chair of Governors.
17th November 2016
This evening we had chance to meet with Lyndsay Hall, a consultant who has worked closely with the school over the last 18 months. Lyndsay has previously been a middle school headteacher, as well as having extensive experience as a lead Ofsted inspector. She had spent the day at GIA today, and had taken the opportunity to carry out a 'learning walk' - this is where senior school leaders, or external advisors visit classes to observe teaching and learning. Staff and pupils had no prior warning of Lyndsay's visit, so this was definitely a 'typical' day.
It was fantastic to hear Lyndsay's feedback. She described the school as 'delightful', praising the high quality of teaching and commenting on how engaged all children were in every class. She was also keen to tell us about the excellent behaviour of pupils, both in class and during break and lunch times. Well done everyone!
9th November 2016
It was a pleasure to be at today's Open Evening for prospective year 5 pupils. We enjoyed the chance to meet so many enthusiastic year 4s, and look forward to welcoming many of them next Summer for our transfer days.
Welcome to our blog! Throughout 2015, we published a termly update from governors, which you'll find on the newsletters page. At our Full Governing Body meeting last week, we decided that replacing our newsletter with a blog would give us more flexibility to update you as and when we need to, and we hope you'll find this page useful. As always, please get in touch if you have any suggestions for information you'd like to see here.