Chulmleigh Academy Trust

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Week Ending 11 December 2016

Another interesting and varied week as Chair of the Multi-Academy Trust including strategic work, learning, keeping well-informed and supporting.


Monday morning started with my weekly meeting with Mike. These meetings are important to keep me well-informed and support the leadership of the Trust. We covered several items including strategic developments, future meeting agenda with Rebecca Ledger (Regional Schools Commissioner Office), weekly meeting with Linda Morris (Business Manager), staffing update and pupil performance progress information.

My weekly meeting with Adrian included work with the Academy Advisory Groups, strategic planning issues, governance, and website development work.

More than Meetings and Events

While in my blog I tend to record information about formal meetings and events, the role of Chair involves being well informed and well engaged with all aspects of the Trust’s work.

I have communication on most days, mainly through email and mainly with Mike and Adrian. One example this week was the refinement of CAT documentation about the governance of the organisation.

This week I have also read through the Ofsted School Inspection Handbook. It’s important that the Board of Directors remain well informed about the Ofsted process and expectations.


On Thursday evening, it was a delight to attend the Christmas Musical Concert at Chulmleigh Community College. This is annual traditional event organised by the Music Department and a fantastic showcase of students’ talents. I was pleased to see so many parents, carers, families and friends at this event and by their reactions obviously enjoying every performance by different students. My thanks go to all involved it was a brilliant evening performance.


On Friday morning I was involved in a meeting with Rebecca Ledger from the Regional School Commissioners Office to discuss strategic issues and the future arrangements of Chulmleigh Academy Trust. The Trust is now in a West Country Teaching School Alliance and is in the process of applying as a lead school in another Teaching School Alliance. These Alliances encourage schools to work collaboratively in offering support for professional development and school improvement. The Regional Schools Commissioners Office is working across the region to help shape the educational landscape for the future. Chulmleigh are ambitious and aspirational about supporting and promoting high quality education and therefore being a significant contributor to the local educational provision and excellence in the future.

On a brief visit to Burrington School it was possible to see the pupils and staff working on a Christmas theme. The school will be performing in the local church next Wednesday and their preparation contributes to their understand about Christmas.

On Friday afternoon I visited a well-attended Christmas Fayre at Chulmleigh Primary School. It was great to see all the work that had gone in to making this a very interesting and fun Fayre. Thanks go to all the pupils, staff, parents and supporters for contributing to the success of this event.

Over the Weekend

On Saturday students, staff and parent volunteers were again on Dartmoor on a walk as part of the 10 Tors / DoE preparations. During these walks I rely on their Facebook posting to keep in touch with progress. Saturday was a particularly wet and difficult walking day and Facebook was ’quiet’ all day. I was somewhat relieved when a short posting late in the day confirmed all was well and the group had overcome awful weather conditions to arrive home safely.

Year 11 have been on a weekend residential trip to London to visit the British Museum / Imperial War Museum during the weekend. Thanks to staff and all those who contributed to the visit. These kind of experiences are invaluable for students, both in supporting their academic learning and in their personal and social development. I look forward to learning about their visit on Monday morning.