From 1st April 2022, we are now proud to be a part of The Chancery Multi Academy Trust. You can find more detail about the Trust here: Chancery MAT
Intention to Convert to Academy Status
Whenever governors meet, we discuss the challenges that Elworth Hall faces as well as celebrating its successes. We also have a responsibility to develop and implement a long-term strategic plan to secure and strengthen the future of Elworth Hall.
There are 124 primary schools in Cheshire East, and 70 schools (56%) have converted to or are in the process of converting to academy status. The remaining 54 are, like Elworth Hall, maintained by the local authority. The governors note an ongoing decline in the quality of some of the services we receive from the local authority and are firmly of the belief that this decline will only intensify as more schools decide to convert to academy status. Whilst, on the surface, it could be argued that our conversion would only exacerbate this situation, it is the government’s intention that every school in England will, in time, convert to academy status. Equally as important to consider is the real risk of not converting and being ultimately forced to join another multi academy trust (MAT), one who more than likely does not share our values and ethos.
To do nothing and ‘wait and see’ is, in the governing body’s opinion, not a viable option. We have for some time considered the options open to us including forming a federation (semi-formal partnership) with other local maintained primaries and joining a pre-existing multi academy trust. As part of this, we have had informal conversations with a number of organisations, including local multi academy trusts.
After careful consideration, the governing body believe that the strongest step for Elworth Hall is to seek academy status and join the Chancery Multi Academy Trust. Chancery is a partnership between three primary schools – Excalibur and Pikemere, both in Alsager, and The Berkeley in Wistaston – with another two schools in the local area actively seeking membership. You can find out more about Chancery on their website: https://www.chancerytrust.co.uk/.
As an Academy our funding would change slightly as it would come directly from the DfE rather than the Local Authority. We would join over 6,000 other schools that have successfully converted and be in a better position to manage our school in the way we want. It will also help to safeguard the way in which we provide learning experiences for Elworth Hall pupils, allowing us to continue to embed our school ethos: every child achieves because we care.
Feedback from parents and carers is an important part of this process. If you have any comments, feedback or questions, please email these to firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject “Academy Consultation”, stating the name and year group of your child. There will also be the opportunity to discuss the proposed conversion with both of us at a virtual ‘Meet the Head’ session on Thursday 1st July, at 10:00am.
Where possible, to assist with providing a prompt response before the end of term, please submit your comments by midday on Friday 9th July.
Hard copies of the letter and the FAQ document are available from the school office on request.