Who dares to teach must never cease to learn.
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Maltings Academy is a key member of the Academies Enterprise Trust (AET), the operational arm of the Greensward Charitable Trust, which is a federation of academies created to provide thousands of students with the best possible education.
The AET aims to provide the opportunity for all young learners to fulfil their real potential, broaden their horizons and become active, prosperous and successful citizens in the world around them. The AET believes that all young people deserve to become world class learners — to learn, enjoy, succeed and thrive in a first rate educational environment, with the best facilities, the best teaching and the most up to date resources available to them.
The AET is committed to doing everything it can to ensure that young people are able to, in the future, compete on the world stage with the skills, confidence and flair to generate new ideas, new initiatives and thereby make a full contribution to tomorrow's world.
CEO, Academies Enterprise Trust
The Greensward Charitable Trust is proud to be the sponsor of the Academies Enterprise Trust. Our aim as sponsor is for all the children and young people who prepare for and attend our Academies to participate, with their parents or carers and wider families, in learning and developing skills and attributes necessary to contribute fully to the local, regional, national, and emerging global economies. We want them to maintain a sense of place, citizenship and commitment in their communities, whilst developing their environmental and social responsibilities, where all will see the United Kingdom as a great place to live, work, and visit.
There are nine million highly qualified workers in Britain, but the challenge of the next ten years is that we will need five million more. If we are to even maintain our standards of living the country must improve its capabilities of producing the wealth that will have benefits for all. Higher standards of living will depend on higher standards of learning for all.
Through our Federation we aspire to build Academies of the future that will make significant contributions to this agenda by developing a working model of how learning can take place in a new era. The UK’s competitiveness depends on every citizen contributing to the success of the country. Already we have seen demographic trends which show that we now have more people over sixty years of age than we have young people under sixteen. This means that we can no longer tolerate or support the ten thousand young people each year who fall out of the education system by the age of fourteen and become yet another ‘Not in Education, Employment or Training’ (NEET) statistic by the age of nineteen.
This new era has seen a shift in the balance of world trade with the ‘BRIC’ countries (Brazil, Russia, India and China) having greater access to ever diminishing world resources. The need to develop highly qualified skilled workers in the UK will be increasingly important. We need to develop a workforce that is creative, innovative, risk taking and capable of self-starting. We need more and more young people who can compete on the world stage, free from bureaucracy, and free to generate new ideas, industries and concepts, all of which are crucial for the wealth of our country.
Our federation of Academies will embrace new technologies in world class learning facilities, building on the best practice and experiences that each of the predecessor schools has developed over a number of years. By sharing common standard operating procedures, frameworks and policies, we will be developing Academies that can lead an education evolution rather than performing status. Innovation at Greensward Academy has been a fundamental driver in helping us raise standards. By releasing the collective ambitions, aspirations and desires to achieve world class outcomes that is in all of us, we will be offering a model of education that is sustainable, relevant, exciting and engaging, but most of all effective in playing its part in developing world class citizens. Each and every one of us has a vital part to play to ensure the success of this venture – and the success of every learner.
An Academy is a publicly funded independent school which strives to provide a first class free education for all its students.
It may be sponsored by organisations from a wide range of backgrounds, such as high performing schools and colleges, universities, individual philanthropists, businesses, public agencies and the voluntary sector.
It aims to provide a teaching and learning environment that is in line with the best in the maintained (local authority) sector and offer a broad and balanced curriculum to students of all abilities, focussing on one or more specialisms.
Academies work in different ways from other schools, and are accountable to the Department for Education (DfE) through a Funding Agreement, which is a legally binding contract between the DfE and the Academy sponsor.
The Funding Agreement specifies how the Academy will be run, what its responsibilities will be and what powers the Secretary of State at the DfE will have. It requires the Governing Body to publish procedures of its meetings. As a charitable trust, the Academies Enterprise Trust must also prepare and file annual accounts with the Charity Commission, prepare an annual report for the Charity Commissioners and ensure that their accounts are independently audited.
All Academies must have regard to the same School Admissions Code, SEN (Special Educational Needs) Code of Practice and exclusions guidance as all other state-funded schools. They are also required to follow the National Curriculum programmes of studies in English, Maths, Science and ICT. Academies are inspected by Ofsted in the same way as maintained schools.
Some Academies have no union representation – what is the AET position on unions?
The AET recognises the following trade unions for individual and collective representation, consultation and negotiation purposes. In Essex the AET has a formal agreement with them: the teacher unions (ACSL, ATL, NASUWT and NUT) and the unions representing support and other professional school staff (GMB, UNISON and Unite).
What about the funding?
Funding is certainly a crucial part of the process. Academies are funded at the same rate as other state schools. However, there are a number of economies of scale that the sponsors can take advantage of in functions previously delivered by other organisations, such as finance, human resources, facilities management and teacher training. This releases additional money which is passed on to the Academy.
If it all goes wrong, who will be held accountable?
It is the Academies Enterprise Trust, the operational division of the sponsor, Greensward Charitable Trust, who will be held responsible to the Department for Education (DfE.) In the past, if schools were failing it was the responsibility of the Local Authority to step in and take action. Day to day responsibility for the Academy will, however, remain with the Executive Principal and Headteacher.