Message from Director of the Trust
The Director of the Co-operative Academies Trust, Frank Norris wrote in the Times Educational Supplement today 23/1/15:
One of the most irritating aspects of my role is that people both inside and outside the world of education often wrongly assume that all academies are the same.
The word ‘academy’ has become shorthand to mean all schools that are no longer maintained by a local authority and have become somewhat independent. But that does not mean they are all identical – I can tell you they are not.
The support The Co-operative gives as a business sponsor to our seven academies (three secondaries and four primaries) in Leeds, Manchester and Stoke-on-Trent is varied and not based on direct funding. What it offers are business and governance expertise, as well as the commitment of willing volunteers from among its staff and membership as governors. All this makes a real difference to the students in what can be only be described as challenging environments. Indeed, with its high-profile brand and co-operative values, the group could have chosen to sponsor almost any schools in the UK, but it decided to support schools that have traditionally been considered difficult and demanding.
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