Parents give guarded welcome to latest from HEART Academies Trust

SSC Action Group, which is bringing together unhappy families of students from Cauldwell, Shackleton and Shortstown primary schools.'Karen Chamberlain (left) and Kim Owens (right)
SSC Action Group, which is bringing together unhappy families of students from Cauldwell, Shackleton and Shortstown primary schools.'Karen Chamberlain (left) and Kim Owens (right)

Parents at three primary schools where bosses are planning to make the headteachers redundant have responded to the latest announcement from HEART Academies Trust.

The trust today announced that the pause to their plans would be extended until the new year, while they “engage fully with staff, parents and other stakeholders”.

Heart Academy meet Angela Raynor and Yasin

Heart Academy meet Angela Raynor and Yasin

And parents at Cauldwell, Shackleton and Shortstown primary schools said this was good news, although they said there was still much work to be done to re-build bridges.

Karen Chamberlain from the SSC Action Group said: “This is a positive step forward and we are pleased the trust have acknowledged and apologised for their poor communications over this whole process

“They are reviewing governance at the trust to be facilitated by the Department of Education, which is very welcome. We hope this will address many of the issues regarding the poor communications and the accuracy of information being recorded and shared transparently.

“There are some mixed messages regarding timescales; they have said they are not putting a limit on how long the review will take, but they have also said it will be completed early in the new year.

“That they are reviewing governance is very welcome, but there are many other things which have gone wrong over the last few weeks.”

Mrs Chamberlain added that parents were keen to ensure that the new proposed structure - which would also see three deputy headteachers and seven assistant head being made redundant, while a new ‘executive headteacher was appointed - was not seen as a done deal.

Despite HEART putting the scheme on hold nine days ago (October 17) they still went ahead with interviews for the new job.

Mrs Chamberlain said: “They are still implying that the restructure will be implemented. It’s not just the process that worries us, it’s what they want to do.

“We want to work with the trust, but they need to build trust again with stakeholders - that’s parents, staff, and the headteachers.”

Read more:

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Headteacher redundancy plans: Pause extended
Heart Academies Trust parents head to Parliament
Plans to make headteachers redundant put on hold
School bosses accused of “betrayal”
“Betrayal”: The full story
Reasons for the proposed changes
Details of the proposed changes
What comes next?