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Academy Consultation and Conversion

We are letting you know that we have applied to the Regional Schools Commissioner seeking agreement for a proposal for Easthampstead Park Community School, to convert to an academy within the Kings Group Academies trust. We hope to be granted an academy order upon completion of our application.

Our school is a community school and we are committed to working with parents and carers and the wider community. We think it is important that everyone can ask questions, explore the proposal in more detail with us, and be involved in the consultation.

The Governing Board of Easthampstead Park Community School conducted a formal consultation process to seek the views of parents/carers, staff and the local community on the proposal to convert to academy and join Kings Group Academies trust.

Formal consultation was conducted from 19th April 2022 to 3rd May 2022 for Parents and Carers.

Formal consultation with the staff was conducted from 19th April 2022 and extended until the final staff meeting held on the 23rd of May 2022.

This provided ample opportunity for stakeholders to submit their views by means of an on-line survey. Feedback provided for the survey responses is included in Annex 1 of this report  Governors reviewed the survey and the responses. All of your views were taken into account before a decision was made.

Governors agreed that there was sufficient support for the school to convert. Governors also concluded that the conduct of the consultation process met the requirements of the Academies Act 2010 and the tests for reasonableness. The consultation process is now complete and the Governors Vote on academisation will be conducted at an Extraordinary meeting.

An Extraordinary meeting of the Governing Body was held on the 20th of June and the decision was passed with a majority vote in favour that Easthampstead Park Community School becomes an academy with Kings Group Academies trust.  The final report was presented at the meeting and is available to view HERE.

The DFE has issued an academy order on the 22 June for Easthampstead Park Community School, to convert to an academy within the Kings Group Academies trust.

Letters were sent to the stakeholders to advise them of the outcome of the process on  5 July 2022.

The academy conversion process can now begin. We expect the process to be concluded in the first school term of the 2022-23 academic year, however stakeholders will be informed as we move through the phases of the process.

Thank you for your patience and support.

The Governing Body

Easthampstead Park Community School

 

Academisation Updates

Academy Consultation #16 05.07.2022 Letters to stakeholders

Dear Parents Carers and Staff

Letters to the stakeholders have been sent vie email. Copies of the letters are below for your perusal

https://www.epschool.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/07/Academisation-and-Final-Report-Parents-5.7.2022.pdf

https://www.epschool.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/07/Academisation-and-Final-Report-Staff-5.7.2022.pdf

Regards,

The Governing Body

Academy Consultation #15 22.06.2022 Academy Order has been issued by the DFE

Dear Parents Carers and Staff

Easthampstead Park Community school’s application to convert to academy status and join King’s Group Academies was presented to the RSC at today’s Advisory Board meeting on 22 June 2022. We are pleased to inform you the RSC approved the application and to that end, an Academy Order (AO) letter from the RSC will shortly be sent to the school. 

Regards,

The Governing Body

Academy Consultation #14 20.06.2022 Final report on the Consultation for the Academisation proposal

Dear Parents Carers and Staff

The Governors would like to thank the school community for their participation in the formal consultation held from 19 April 2022 to 23 May 2022 regarding the proposal for Easthampstead Park Community School to convert to an academy within the Kings Group Academies trust.

The Governors extraordinary meeting was held on the 20 June 2022 for the final decision on the academisation proposal for Easthampstead Park Community School to convert to an academy within the Kings Group Academies trust

The final report was presented at the meeting and is available to view HERE.

 

The decision will be published by Friday 1 July 2022

Regards,

The Governing Body

Academy Consultation #13 13.06.2022 Notice to Governors of Extraordinary Meeting to review Academisation proposal

Dear Parents Carers and Staff

A notice of an extraordinary meeting has been sent to all Governors providing 7 days notice on the review and vote with regards to the academisation proposal for Easthampstead Park Community School to convert to an academy within the Kings Group Academies trust.

Regards,

The Governing Body

Academy Consultation #12 27.05.2022 Consultation is now closed to all stakeholders

Dear Parents Carers and Staff

Now that the consultation period has finally closed for all stakeholder, the governing body will collate the information and advise stakeholders of the outcome in due course.

Regards,

The Governing Body

Academy Consultation #11 18.05.2022 Staff meetin to be held on Friday 20 May 2022 has now been moved to 20 May 2022

Dear staff, there is a whole school meeting at 2 pm on Monday the 23rd May to discuss with union representatives the proposed Academisation.

All Colleagues are welcome to attend.

This replaces the scheduled meeting planned for Friday which was not deemed to be convenient. 

Agenda – Venue the staffroom

  1. Welcome and introductions
  2. PowerPoint presentation to cover the main points in the letter previously circulated with staff -proposal to join Kings Academy MAT consultation
  3. Feedback given to staff and the community published on the school website
  4. Questions posed by the NEU and responses from Kings Academy as requested     shared with Union representatives 
  5. Questions from staff
  6. Questions from Union representatives
  7. Summation 
Academy Consultation #10 09.05.2022 The consultation period for staff has been extended till 20.05.2022
Dear Staff
 
The consultation period has been extended for staff and further meetings with the unions have been arranged to ensure staff are fully informed and consulted with.
All updates are are communicated on the school website https://www.epschool.org/parents/academy-consultation/
 
The consultation  for teachers and staff closes on  Friday 20 May 2022 Your feedback is important to us. We ask that you use the Google form to provide your feedback. https://forms.gle/UDZGwoX6BHEzEAG59
 
Thank you for your understanding.
 
The Governing Board
Academy Consultation #9 06.05.2022 Written response to consultation questions and comments
Dear Parents and Carers
 
Please CLICK HERE  for the written feedback to your questions and responses to the good/ bad additional comments captured within the online google form.  We hope that this feedback together with Mrs Cook’s VIDEO provides you with the assurance you need if we decide to proceed with the academy conversation
 
We are aware that some parents and carers do not use social media and some are not members of the Parents Group. So to ensure the feedback is visible to all stakeholders the updates are communicated on the school website https://www.epschool.org/parents/academy-consultation/
 
The consultation  for teachers and staff closes on Tuesday 10 May 2022 Your feedback is important to us. We ask that you use the Google form to provide your feedback. https://forms.gle/UDZGwoX6BHEzEAG59
 
Thank you for your understanding.
 
The Governing Board
 
Academy Consultation #8 - 03.05.2022 18.00 School Staff and teachers consultation closes on Tuesday 10 May 2022
Dear Staff and Teachers
 
The consultation for staff and teachers closes on Tuesday 10 May 2022 Your feedback is important to us. We ask that you use the Google form to provide your feedback. https://forms.gle/UDZGwoX6BHEzEAG59
 
To ensure your feedback is visible to all stakeholders the updates are communicated on the school website https://www.epschool.org/parents/academy-consultation/
 
Thank you for your understanding.
 
The Governing Board
 
Academy Consultation #7 - 03.05.2022 18.00 Parents and Carers Consultation is now closed
Dear Parents and Carers
The Parents and Carers consultation is now closed.
We thank you for your feedback and understanding. We will endeavour add the responses on feedback received after 28.04.2022 17h00 to the website by this Friday 6 May 2022.
We are aware that some parents and carers do not use social media and some are not members of the Parents Group. So to ensure the feedback is visible to all stakeholders the updates are communicated on the school website > https://www.epschool.org/parents/academy-consultation/
Regards,
The Governing Board
Academy Consultation #6 29.04.2022 Written response to consultation questions and comments
Dear Parents and Carers
 
Please CLICK HERE  for the written feedback to your questions and responses to the good/ bad additional comments captured within the online google form.  We hope that this feedback together with Mrs Cook’s VIDEO provides you with the assurance you need if we decide to proceed with the academy conversation
 
We are aware that some parents and carers do not use social media and some are not members of the Parents Group. So to ensure the feedback is visible to all stakeholders the updates are communicated on the school website https://www.epschool.org/parents/academy-consultation/
 
The consultation closes on Tuesday 3 May 2022 Your feedback is important to us. We ask that you use the Google form to provide your feedback. https://forms.gle/UDZGwoX6BHEzEAG59
 
Thank you for your understanding.
 
The Governing Board
 
Academy Consultation #5 27.04.2022 A VLOG from the HT
Dear Parents and Carers
 
Our headteacher, Mrs. Cook has prepared a Vlog for Parents and Carers regarding the academy consultation.
 
We will provide our written answers to your questions and responses to the good/ bad additional comments this Friday 29.04.2022.
 
We are aware that some parents and carers do not use social media and some are not members of the Parents Group. So to ensure the feedback is visible to all stakeholders the updates are communicated on the school website https://www.epschool.org/parents/academy-consultation/
 
Your feedback is important to us. We ask that you use the Google form to provide yourf eedback. https://forms.gle/UDZGwoX6BHEzEAG59
 
Thank you for your understanding.
 
The Governing Board
 
Academy Consultation #4 26.04.2022 VLOG from the HT coming soon
Dear Parents and Carers
 
Our headteacher, Mrs.Cook is preparing a video message for Parents and Carers about the academy consultation.
This will be communicated on Thursday 28 April 2022.
 
After the communication of the video, we will provide answers to your questions and responses to the good/ bad additional comments.
We are aware that some parents and carers do not use social media and some are not members of the Parents Group. So to ensure the feedback is visible to all stakeholders it will be communicated on the school website.
We ask that you use the Google form to provide your feedback. https://forms.gle/UDZGwoX6BHEzEAG59
An additional comments section has now been included on the form as well as a” neither for nor against” option on the academy conversion vote.
 
We would like to assure you that no decisions have been made regarding any Uniform changes. The consultation is used to gather your feedback on the proposed changes to the uniform should we proceed with the academy conversion.
 
Your feedback is important to us. Thank you for your understanding.
The Governing Board
Academy consultation #3 24.04.2022 Your feedback
Dear Parents and Carers
As part of the formal consultation, we are collecting comments good and bad. We will ensure the recent post and any others are included in the consultation section on the website.
We have 2 parent governors and not all governors have access to this Parents group.
Parents need to please use the form https://forms.gle/pvKUezS77jGDG9Ns8  to make their points so the Governor’s can then make sure that they are discharging their responsibility as required by the DFE. An additional comments section has now been included on the form.
We will clarify and update the FAQ on the website section regarding uniform for you all but rest assured the uniform will be phased in.
The school is acutely aware of cost pressures at the moment and if the process is approved, this will be central to arrangements made.
Your feedback is important to us.
Thank you for your understanding
The Governing Board
Academy Consultation #2 20.04.2022 A copy of the letter to Parents
Please do take the time to read the info on this page https://www.epschool.org/parents/academy-consultation/ and respond to the consultation.
The full letter sent to Parents and Carers is also available on the website and included in the link below
The formal consultation period opens today 19 April 2022 and will remain open until 3 May 2022.

Please use this form online at: https://forms.gle/QErK2QdKDU6fqDzf7 to ask any questions

Your feedback is important to us.
Thank you for your understanding
The Governing Board

 

 

See more
Academy Consultation #1 19.04.2022 Opening Consultation
The Governing Body of Easthampstead Park Community School have been carefully considering the best future strategy for the school so that we can build on our achievement of being an outstanding learning community. We want to continue the improvement in the schools’ and pupils’ performance, to protect the unique ethos, values and character of our schools and to keep the freedom to run our school in ways best for our community of pupils, staff, parents and carer.
We are letting you know that we have applied to the Regional Schools Commissioner seeking agreement for a proposal for Easthampstead Park Community School, to convert to an academy within the Kings Group Academies trust. We hope to be granted an academy order which means that the RSC is content for us to proceed with plans to convert.
The Governing Body is interested in understanding your views on this as we look to shape the future of our school. Our next step is seeking the views of staff, parents, and the communities around the school. Our school is a community school and we are committed to working with parents and carers and the wider community. We think it is important that everyone can ask questions, explore the proposal in more detail with us, and be involved in the consultation.
Please do take the time to read the info on this page https://www.epschool.org/parents/academy-consultation/ and respond to the consultation.
The full letter sent to Parents and Carers is also available on the website here https://www.epschool.org/…/Parent-Letter-Pre-Academy…
The formal consultation period opens today 19 April 2022 and will remain open until 3 May 2022.
Please use this form online at: https://forms.gle/QErK2QdKDU6fqDzf7 to ask any questions not already included in the FAQ’s section on the website. We will update the website with the questions from this form regularly during the consultation process. This form also allows you to tell us whether you support the proposal.
Your feedback is important to us.
Thank you for your understanding
The Governing Board

The Consultation Process

More information on the consultation process

Why do we need to consult ?

Section 5 of the Academies Act 2010 (the ‘Act’) requires the school’s governing body to consult with “such persons as they think appropriate” about whether the school should convert into an academy.

The process is generally flexible and schools have broad discretion as to how it is carried out. However, a formal consultation process is recommended, which provides key stakeholders with all necessary information as to why conversion is being proposed and the changes that will occur due to conversion. There is no statutory requirement to consult with any specific party, however the government recommends that this should include staff members, parents and carers and involve pupils and the wider community.

How long do we need to consult for?

Consultation may take place before an application is made for academy status but must be completed before a funding agreement is entered into with the Secretary of State. The consultation is about listening to the views of interested parties and ensuring their questions are answered. There is no specific time for how long consultation should continue for, but this should be long enough to allow interested groups to have a fair chance to respond and ask questions.

How will the consultation process be conducted?

Consultation for conversion to academy status will be conducted virtually. We have worked to find a solution that will enable consultation to go ahead and the process will be as follows: 

  1. A letter to all parents opening the consultation period (this letter)  
  2. Please use the form online at: https://forms.gle/KJgem3zK7cHhr75fA to ask any questions not included in the FAQ’s already on the website . We will include answers to frequently asked questions on the school’s website on a dedicated page called “Academy Consultation” under the “Parents” page. That will include answers to frequently asked questions which will be updated regularly. 
  3. There is a separate form for you to tell us whether you support the proposal at :  https://forms.gle/ewqnfyRaQaP4qu8H7
  4. If you would like to talk to someone about the proposal and how it affects your child, please give your name and phone number and we will contact you; otherwise answers will be published periodically within FAQ documents on each school’s website.

The formal consultation period opens today 19 April 2022 and will remain open until 3 May 2022.

What happens after the consultation closes?

Following the consultation period, the Governing Body will consider all of the feedback and views received during the consultation and will then make the final decision on whether to complete the process. We will write to parens and staff to inform you of our decision. 

Frequently Asked Questions 

Scroll down to see the frequently asked questions that we will continue to add to as and when we receive questions during the  consultation period.

Why does the Governing body want to join Kings Academy?

The Governors of Easthampstead Park Community School see joining the Kings Group Academies as a positive way forward for the school to develop in the future and we hope that you will agree. The school and the Kings Academies’ vision for what we want to achieve are very closely aligned which is why we have chosen to partner with the King’s Group.

How does the EPCS Vision align to the KGA Vision?
EPCS Vision KGA Vision
Mission ‘It takes a whole village to raise a child’
We seek to develop students who have a strong sense of community, both locally and globally, who are confident, able to lead others and bring about positive change. 

We work hard to foster a strong three way partnership between parents, students and the school and believe that having these bonds is essential if our pupils are to achieve their full potential

Our vision is to create a global community of pupils and staff; broadening horizons, fostering understanding and raising aspirations by connecting our Academies with other schools across the world

Participation (with their families) – in shaping pupils’ education.  To build a positive partnership with families and the community, expecting them to hold us to account while providing support and prompting our continuous improvement

Vision

Providing an outstanding education for all students which fully prepares them for life beyond school. 

 


We aim to develop learners who are happy, healthy and equipped in every way to deal with the challenges and opportunities they will face in the future. 

The EPCS Character Values are central to the school. 

We have high academic aspirations for all of our students, but also believe that education is about far more than just achieving outstanding academic results in examinations. Our planned curriculum offers students the opportunity to make outstanding progress from their starting points and that the curriculum offer removes any potential barriers to learning.

The King’s Group Academies’ mission is to equip all pupils with the confidence, knowledge, skills and values that will enable them to thrive in global society

 

Full engagement with families – in shaping pupils’ education so that they can be their authentic happy self

Our Academies strive for academic excellence, enriched with opportunities for personal development and success

Our Academies strive for excellence beyond the classroom, celebrating equality and diversity and provide opportunities for personal development and success.

Strategy
3 year
  1. School as Good with elements of Outstanding Ofsted Framework
  2. Progress 8 at National Average (cohort dependent)
  3. Student attainment aligned to FFT20 
  4. ALPS T Score (A-Level) at 3 or better 
  5. Curriculum delivery is broad and balance and supports students aspirations at all levels
  6. Financially sustainable
  7. No on roll = PAN
  8. Attendance at National Average
  1. Identical
  2. Identical
  3. Identical
  4. Identical
  5. Identical
  6. Identical
  7. Identical
  8. Identical
What will change for your child ?

If we proceed, you and your child are unlikely to see any change in your day to day experience of school.The students will not notice any immediate difference. They will be in the same school in the same classrooms

Leaders, teachers and support staff will remain and have their terms and conditions protected as part of the conversion process; the school will continue to have a governing body; all children on roll at the school will continue; times of the school day, term dates and the school’s admissions policy will stay the same.

We will continue to strive for an outstanding education for all our children. However, in time the children may notice changes and improvements in the way that they learn, resulting from the greater training opportunities given to teaching staff to innovate and improve the pupil experience.

What are the benefits of EPCS joining KGA?
  • Closer collaborative working between strong schools so that staff can build upon sharing their expertise in order to raise standards for children even further.  
  • Securing best value for money on products and services therefore achieving greater economies of scale, so that we can spend as much as possible in classrooms.  
  • Opportunities for the trust to apply and benefit from grants and bids that schools do not have access to under local authority control.  
  • Greater collaborative working with a wide range of schools across other trusts and opportunities for other schools to join in order to build capacity even further.
Will the uniform change?

We honour the individual characteristics of our schools.  With effect from September 2023, subject to consultation, the following changes are suggested

  • The blazer will remain the same with a new ‘iron on’ logo
  • The skirt, an optional item, will be tartan, with a navy accent
  • The tie and PE kit will remain the same, with the new logo added
  • The logo will be co-designed and could include the EPCS lion and the KGA crown

 

Will the name change?

The suggested name, with effect from September 2022, is King’s Academy Easthampstead Park

Key Facts about Academies

Scroll down to see some key facts about Academies.

What is an academy?

Academies are state-funded schools but they are independent of local authorities meaning they are not run by councils. They can decide on their own curriculums, term dates, school hours, and much more.

They are still funded by the government but they get to decide how they spend their money, from how much they pay teachers to how much they spend on classroom equipment.

Over half of pupils in England are already educated in academies and there are three types:

  • Converters – formerly council-run schools that chose to become academies;
  • Sponsored – previously underperforming council-run schools in need of support, and/or judged ‘Inadequate’ by Ofsted, where the law requires them to become academies; or
  • Free schools – brand new schools established to meet a need for good school places in the area.

 

What are multi-academy trusts?

Multi-academy trusts are charities that have responsibility for running a number of academies. They cannot, as charities, be run for financial profit and any surplus monies must be reinvested in the trust.

By working in partnership with each other, the schools within a trust can share staff, curriculum expertise, and effective teaching practices, and work together to deliver the best outcomes for pupils.

While other types of school partnerships can be effective, the key difference with academy trusts is that there is shared accountability for standards across the trust; all schools within the trust support each other and the trust is accountable for them all.

Why is the government’s focus now on supporting schools to join strong trusts?

Joining a multi-academy trust remains a positive choice for schools. They enable the strongest leaders to take responsibility for supporting more schools, develop great teachers, and allow schools to focus on what really matters – teaching, learning, and a curriculum that is based on what works.

 

Multi-academy trusts have the capacity to provide high-quality training and evidence-based curriculum support for already great teachers, freeing them to focus on what they do best – teaching.

If they have all this freedom, how are they accountable?

This freedom does not mean academies are not regulated. The department’s National and Regional Schools Commissioners and their teams, together with the Education and Skills Funding Agency, provide robust educational and financial oversight of all academy trusts.

Individual academies are still subject to Ofsted inspections and ratings in exactly the same way as council-run schools.

In fact, academies are subject to greater accountability than council-run sch

How does the staffing model operate?

The regulations that place requirements on maintained schools do not directly apply to academies. General employment law applies to academies in the same way as to other organizations. Teachers must be suitably qualified. 

The Academy Trust has responsibility for setting pay and conditions. We will employ all staff on national terms and conditions so there is no change for staff. All teachers employed at an academy have access to the Teachers Pensions Scheme and all other employees at an academy have access to the Local Government Pension Scheme

What is the curriculum model in an academy?

Academies are required to have a broad and balanced curriculum that promotes the spiritual, moral, cultural, mental, and physical development of pupils and prepares them for the opportunities, responsibilities, and experiences of later life. The curriculum must include English, Maths, and Science; Religious Education; and Relationships education and Health education. Academies are required to take part in the same pupil assessment arrangements and to report on the achievement and attainment of pupils in the same way as all other state-funded schools. 

How does the funding work ?

The academy trust will receive General Annual Grant from the Secretary of State calculated as the equivalent to that which would be received by a maintained school taking account of the number of pupils at the academy. Capital funding is also available, channelled through the Academy Trust. Every academy trust must abide by the requirements of and have regard to the guidance in the Academies Financial Handbook.

What about SEND?

Academies should be fully inclusive local schools and in common with all other schools have a clear legal duty to do their best to meet the needs of children and young people with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND).

What is the admission policy of an academy?

Academies are required to provide education for pupils wholly or mainly drawn from the area in which the academy is situated. Academies must have admission arrangements that clearly set out how children will be admitted, including the criteria that will be applied if there are more applications than available places. Academies are required to provide education for pupils of different abilities (i.e. they may not select pupils by ability).

Are academies inspected by Ofsted?

 Academies continue to be subject to Ofsted inspections.