THE Skipton Academy looks set to expand its relationship with Ofsted rated ‘Outstanding’ Ilkley Grammar School by transferring to the Ilkley school’s Moorlands Learning Trust.

If given the go-ahead by the Regional Schools Commissioner, the academy, which was recently taken out of ‘special measures’ will no longer come under the control of the Craven Education Trust, which was formed in 2014 when the former Aireville School was converted to an academy.

Under the leadership of principal Richard McManus, since September, 2017, the academy been working with Ilkley Grammar School over the last several months to drive up standards. It has now received further funding from the Department for Education to continue working with Ilkley Grammar over the next year.

Mr McManus said it was an exciting time for the academy to build on its recent successes and through the new partnership to accelerate further.

“As our recent Ofsted inspection report said, we have a clear vision and a sense of momentum and purpose which puts the academy in a stronger position than it has been for many years.

“I believe the local community are beginning to see the changes we have achieved over the last 18 months and this is reflected by the increase in families choosing to send their children to The Skipton Academy in September.”

He added: “ This is the next step on our journey and we are undertaking it with a partner school in Ilkley Grammar School whose beliefs and ethos closely match our own. Furthermore, the opportunity for some of our current board members to join Moorlands Learning Trust and bring their expertise and experience is another sign of the collaborative approach of the trust and will help ensure that we continue to have a positive impact on our students, staff and the wider community of Skipton. I look forward to The Skipton Academy going from strength to strength as part of Moorlands Learning Trust and continuing its improvement journey.”

“The positive partnership working that has already developed between both schools over recent months can now be built upon further to bring exciting new opportunities for students, staff and the communities of the schools over the coming years.

“In times of great educational change and uncertainty, being part of a strong, collaborative trust helps secure the future success of all schools and we are all delighted that Craven Education Trust has chosen MLT and Ilkley Grammar School as the preferred partner for The Skipton Academy. We will now take this decision to our Regional Schools Commissioners to seek their agreement for the transfer to progress.”

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