Academy trust in Gorleston to join another after struggling to expand

PUBLISHED: 16:56 01 December 2017 | UPDATED: 16:56 01 December 2017

Cliff Park Infant School and Cliff Park Junior School. 

Picture: James Bass

Cliff Park Infant School and Cliff Park Junior School. Picture: James Bass

Archant Norfolk © 2015

A two-school academy trust on the Norfolk coast is due to join another after it struggled to take on more schools.

The East Anglia Schools Trust, which is made up of Cliff Park Infant and Junior Schools in Gorleston, has written to staff about the decision.

Suzanne Mitchell, executive headteacher and chief executive of the trust, said the trust had tried, but been unable, to grow.

The Great Yarmouth and Gorleston area is home to two well established trusts, which between them run nine schools.

Mrs Mitchell said: “Despite our best efforts, it has not been possible to achieve our aim of expanding East Anglia Schools Trust.

“Therefore following discussions, the board, with the support of the Department for Education, has made the decision to join another multi–academy trust.

“We are confident this will give our pupils greater opportunities to achieve, and give our staff the chance to share skills with other schools so that we continue to thrive.”

They said they were not able to confirm which trust they would join, with plans still in the early stages.

Ormiston Academies Trust (OAT) runs four schools in the area, including Cliff Park Ormiston Academy, a high school next to the infant and junior.

But the nearby Edward Worlledge Ormiston Academy, Ormiston Herman Academy and Ormiston Venture Academy also come under its umbrella.

The Inspiration Trust also runs five schools in the area - Cobholm Primary Academy, Great Yarmouth Charter Academy, Great Yarmouth Primary Academy, Stradbroke Primary Academy and Trafalgar College.

The East Anglia Schools Trust was formed last February, replacing its predecessor - Cliff Park Schools Trust - which was formed in 2013.

The infant school initially converted, before sponsoring the junior school.

The trust said parents at both schools had been informed about the plans on Friday.

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