Axe Valley learning federation plan scrapped

Schools pull out of talks to form closer links after fears over funding

PLANS to create an Axe Valley learning federation have been abandoned.

Education officials confirmed today (Monday) that following “an exploration phase” the project will not proceed to formal consultation.

A spokeswoman at Axe Valley Community College, which instigated the talks, said not enough schools were interested in signing up.

A joint statement from Headteacher Martin Smith and Governors’ chairman Graham Godbeer confirmed: “Of the six schools that originally submitted an ‘expression of interest’ four have taken the decision that the federation, on this occasion, was not right for them.

“This includes the governors of The Axe Valley Community College who took the decision, on Friday 15th March, to end the development of the formal federation project.

“For TAVCC the main reason was the introduction of changes to the way federations would be managed financially by the local authority. Future federations would be expected to have a single budget which raises concerns over how schools in the future could be funded and supported.

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“The opportunity to work closely with partner schools has been a privilege and afforded us a deeper understanding and relationship with our partnership schools. Although we have concluded that a formal, hard federation is not the way to move forward we are still committed to achieving our aims through partnerships with schools in the learning community.

“Shortly we will be writing to schools with an invitation to explore with us how an informal partnership can be developed which enables us work collaboratively across a broad range of areas such as school improvement, staff development and business management.

“We would like to take this opportunity to thank all the governors and staff who have invested considerable time in exploring federation with us.”