Vote of confidence in Tring’s academy option

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A cash-strapped school is expecting to be officially made an academy next week in a move that it hopes will save its sixth form.

Cuts to sixth form funding coming in 2015 were one of the main reasons that Tring School has decided to go ahead with the new status.

This year alone £45,000 was cut from its budget but as an academy the school will be able to secure more than £300,000 in extra funding.

It will also be in full control of all of its budget and choose which services it wants to buy and from where.

County councillor Nick Hollinghurst, who is also a governor at the school, said he was confident about the future of the school and the status would help improve standards.

“The sixth form at Tring School has historically been very strong.

“It’s no secret that there are financial problems with sixth forms and academy status will mean there will be more ways in which that can be compensated for. The school will be able to take more effective steps to solving these problems.”

Currently there are no plans to change staff salaries or contracts.

The school has already incorporated itself as a limited company and it has appointed accountants and solicitors, among completing a number of other conversion tasks.

The school’s governing body made the final decision to complete the academy process at its meeting last Wednesday and is expecting for the legalities to be finalised on July 1.

Tring School is among scores of Herts schools making the transition.

Mr Hollinghurst said that he expects nearly all of the schools in Hertfordshire will be academies by the end of next year. He said: “The county council is gearing up for this with a special council-owned company to provide advice and assistance in cost effective ways.”