Tring School is set for a major overhaul – after partnering with a primary school and putting forward plans for a £20m redevelopment.
The school has converted from a single academy trust (SAT) to a multi-academy trust (MAT), which means it will partner with Grove Road Primary School – which itself has now converted to an academy.
Together the two schools now form the Ridgeway Learning Partnership, which launched on Saturday.
“We are very excited to establish Tring School as a multi academy trust, and to welcome Grove Road Primary School as the first to join this exciting partnership,” said Janis Donald, who chairs the board of trustees for the Trust.
“We now have an opportunity to offer an enhanced, integrated education for students from age 4 to 19 years, whilst enabling better opportunities for training and career development for teachers.
“Working together will also allow us to create budgetary efficiencies, something which all schools need to achieve in this climate of funding cuts.”
A multi-academy trust is a group of schools which formally work together, and are governed by a single board of trustees.
They are funded by the Department for Education, and are independent of the local authority, and have charitable status.
All funds received by the school within the MAT must be used to benefit the children it serves.
The scheme will also allow Tring School to undergo a major transformation, with roughly 75 per cent of the existing school buildings set to be replaced as part of a £20m overhaul funded by the Educational Skills and Funding Agency.
The new school would offer ‘state-of-the-art’ learning facilities, while there would also be a new sports hall.
Both schools were rated most recently as ‘Good’ by Ofsted, although Tring School had ‘many outstanding features’.
It is understood contractors would most likely be appointed to oversee the redevelopment next summer, with building works potentially lasting up to two years.
Susanna Collings, headteacher of Tring School, added: “We believe that establishing the multi academy trust is a really positive move for the students of Tring School, Grove Road School and all other schools wishing to join us.
“This is about further improvement of the educational standards and outcomes for the children of Tring, and in conjunction with the huge improvements we are making to our school and sports facilities, this is fantastic news for the whole community of Tring.”
And Sharon Sanderson, head teacher of Grove Road Primary School, said: “With virtually 100 per cent of our students progressing to Tring School at the age of 11, this is a very important partnership for our school.
“We believe this brings huge opportunities and benefits for our students, both in terms of their learning experience at Grove Road and their successful transition to Tring School.”