HEYCROFT Primary School is to join the South East Essex Academy Trust.
Following recent improvements, Heycroft Primary School will be joining the South East Essex Academy Trust (SEEAT) permanently.
The Department for Education (DfE) announced their decision, which is the latest in a series of events at the Eastwood-based primary school since January 2023, when concerns about the school first arose.
An Ofsted inspection took place in February, before an Interim Executive Board (IEB) was approved by DfE. The rating of inadequate triggered a process to transition the school to an academy trust.
SEEAT have been supporting the school and DfE have chosen them to continue. The conversion to academy status will begin in September and should be complete in 2024.
Andrew Cooper, chief executive at SEEAT, said: “We’re very pleased that the Department for Education selected us to continue our journey with the school and fully welcome them into the SEEAT family.
“SEEAT were always keen to stay in post and maintain that continuity for the children, parents and staff going forward.
“As previously mentioned, an action plan has been drawn up to address the areas of concern and we will continue to introduce those changes and improvements over the course of the next academic year.
“We wish all the staff, children and families of Heycroft and all our schools, a very happy summer holiday and we look forward to continuing to support the school in the next academic year and beyond to make sure every child gets every opportunity to prosper.”
The rapid improvement plan that has been developed between the school, SEEAT and Southend City Council are already showing strong improvements.
George Hayes, chair of the Interim Executive Board at Heycroft Primary School, said: “The appointment of SEEAT as sponsor for the future of Heycroft Primary School will provide the best possible stability and smooth transition, building upon the hard work that has already been undertaken.
“The school has already made significant progress and this transition will formalise arrangements with SEEAT and build upon these strong foundations. I am grateful to both the Local Authority and SEEAT for their ongoing work and support for the school.”
Coun Helen Boyd, cabinet member for children and learning, said: “This is really positive news for Heycroft Primary School, not least for the children, who are already seeing an improvement in their education as a result of the actions taken earlier in the year.
“It has been a tricky academic year, but with the announcement of SEEAT, I hope this provides the children, staff and families with the stability needed to make necessary improvements to the school.”
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