The governors of St Thomas of Canterbury have resolved, following a full consultation exercise to convert to academy status and join the Xavier Catholic Education Trust (Xavier CET). The Department for Education has consented to the conversion and the Diocese has given us their blessing to joining the Xavier CET. It is hoped that we will be joining ready for September 2019.

Converting to an academy has been discussed in governing body meetings since 2012.  But it is only now that we believe the diocesan academy model, and the timing to be right for our school.  There are five main issues which we believe makes this the right time for our school to convert.  These are:

  • An acceptable M.A.T. structure within the Diocese
  • The high performance of the Xavier trust
  • Favourable financial considerations vs local authority
  • The quality of services provided by the trust
  • The operational benefits to the school

The Xavier trust is one of the highest performing trusts in the country.  It gets excellent results at both its Primary and Secondary schools and has the same ethos of providing an education for the whole child as St Thomas of Canterbury does.

In reaching this point the governing body has spoken to and had meetings with many people across the Xavier trust.  The biggest take-away from those meetings is the quality of the services the Xavier trust provides.  They are of an excellent quality, and indeed the services we have already received in getting the school to this point have been of a higher standard than we have previously been exposed to.

There are many operational benefits of working within the trust.  These range from access to subject experts, shared lesson plans, common assessment frameworks, and shared resources to name a few.  Mr Lewin, through many additional meetings with those head teachers is convinced that the quality of education that every child receives would only be enhanced by joining the trust.

It is perhaps that last point that has brought us to this consultation.  The governing body is charged with ensuring the best outcomes for every child at the school and we believe that joining the Xavier CET is the best way to provide that.

Please read the documents provided, they will give you a good understanding of the changes this conversion would entail.

Thank you to everyone who contributed to our Consultation exercise – either in returning response forms or attending the Open Meeting. The outcome of that meeting and the questions and answers raised can all be downloaded from this page together with the slides from the presentation that evening.

For further information about the Xavier CET please follow this link to their website.