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Pingle School

Plans have been unveiled for Pingle School to join the newly-founded de Ferrers Multi Academy Trust..

Plans have been unveiled for Pingle School to join the newly-founded de Ferrers Multi Academy Trust, with parents today being asked for their views on the move.

The Swadlincote comprehensive school is considering the idea of joining the multi academy trust, based in Burton, which Pingle headteacher, Vivien Sharples believes is the 'right thing' for Pingle School.

Mrs Sharples said: "The government is encouraging schools to become an academy or part of a multi academy trust. We are in a very fortunate position as we are not one of the schools being forced to do this. For us, this is entirely optional and any changes we may make will be carefully considered with the interests of the students and the local community at the heart of decision making.

"During the last year, the governing body and I have been considering the possibility of joining a multi academy trust. We have come to a decision that to become part of a multi academy trust is the right thing for The Pingle School at the present time. This means that the school would become independent of the local authority and we would have increased flexibility to ensure that services meet the needs of our children and provide good value for money.

"We are proposing to become part of The de Ferrers Multi Academy Trust, which is a close neighbour in Burton. This would be subject to due diligence taking place. We already work closely together and joining the trust is an obvious next step."

Should Pingle join the de Ferrers trust, it will be the first secondary school other than de Ferrers Academy itself to do so, but will join Horninglow Primary, Lansdowne Infant and Eton Park Junior already within the trust.

Mrs Sharples added: "The trust is extremely successful and we are very fortunate to have this opportunity. We would be the first secondary school to join the trust and it is a very exciting venture for both the de Ferrers Trust and for us. The CEO, Steve Allen is a great supporter and friend of the school.

"It is important that everyone understands that the school will still be The Pingle School; we will retain the same staff and our inclusive values and ethos. It would mean that we would become a member of a local "family" of schools, rather than a local authority school. Any changes which take place in the future would be to make the school even more successful."

A consultation meeting will take place next week, Wednesday, December 16, for parents and pupils to understand more about the proposals. It will take place at 5.30pm.

The consultation will close on Thursday, January 19.

Mrs Sharples added: "Please be assured that the governors and I will continue to strive to ensure we have in place the very best provision for your sons and daughters and we will do our very best to ensure the school goes from strength to strength."