Save Lewes Schools from Becoming a MAT (Multi Academy Trust)

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Dear Tony Smith,

We, the undersigned, ask that you and Sarah Roberts (Chair of Governors at Priory School), Jonathan Sharpe (Chair of Governors at Western Road), Noah Curthoys (Chair of Governors at Wallands), Genevieve Harris (Chair of Governors at Southover), Linda Douglas (Chair of Governors at Iford and Kingston), Mary Burr (Chair of Governors at South Malling) along with all the other members of the Governing Bodies of these six schools, halt the establishment of a Multi Academy Trust.

For the reasons listed below, we believe that a Lewes MAT will have a negative impact on our schools and our children. Parents, teachers, support staff and the National Education Union are opposed to the forming of this MAT.

According to the minutes of the governors meeting at Priory School in July 2018, Lewes Priory school governors “formally agreed to pursue the creation of a MAT (Multi Academy Trust) over the next 12 months”. Plans are now underway to form a MAT out of six Lewes schools without any formal parental consultation.

A significant proportion of schools under Multi Academy Trusts have evidenced failings, misappropriation of funds and poor standards of education. Our children and their teachers deserve better.

Academisation of our schools is not a 'done deal’; it is not necessary and it is not what Lewes wants. These schools should remain part of the community - they belong to us! Let’s work together to secure a better future for our children.

We ask that teachers and parents of all registered pupils should be given a meaningful ballot: ‘Are you in you favour of our school converting to a academy status?’


IMPORTANT FACTS

There is nothing to be gained by becoming a MAT that can’t be achieved by the schools choosing to work more closely together.

MATs do not achieve better exam results.

MATs are not required to employ qualified teachers.

MATs are free to sell off their assets, including land.

MATs get no ‘extra money’ and remain vulnerable to cuts.

MATs are not accountable to elected local authorities.

MATs cannot revert to local authority control once they are formed.

MATs open the door to hostile takeover by Academy chains.

MATs have less financial protection outside the local authority.

MATs are not required to follow the National Curriculum.

MATs have CEOs who can command six figure pay.

MATs can make changes to policies and procedures with no warning.

MATs can choose to exclude children with special needs.

MATs regularly cut support staff and pastoral care.

It’s not too late to save Lewes schools. The governors of the primary schools have not yet agreed to initiate the formal process of MAT creation. Find your school governors here:
Priory: http://www.priory.e-sussex.sch.uk/index.php/school-information/governors
Southover: http://www.thelifecloud.net/schools/SouthoverCEPrimary/spaces/Governors/resources/RootFolder/GovernorsHomepage.page
WRS: http://www.westernroad.e-sussex.sch.uk/website/governors/167548
South Malling: http://www.southmalling.e-sussex.sch.uk/website/governors/33371
Wallands: http://wallandsschool.org/team/governors/
Iford and Kingston: http://www.iford-kingston.e-sussex.sch.uk/governance/



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