Supporting our network of academies

Our academies support each other to improve by working together.

Through our unique collaborative approach, we aim to provide high-quality education for pupils.

We want to support all types of infant, primary and secondary schools in Sussex and the surrounding areas that wish to convert to academy status, enhancing the performance of schools that already achieve good results and improving the performance of others.

Schools joining us who are already rated 'good' or 'outstanding' by Ofsted are able to share what they have learnt to help their colleagues in the local area make improvements too.

Working together: shared accountability

When a school joins our trust, we always start by looking at its existing strengths.

From there we can start the journey towards achieving our aspiration for all of our academies to become ‘outstanding’ schools.

Our approach is collaborative not prescriptive, so we share accountability for improvement with our academy leaders. We work in partnership to help academies improve, putting into action a set of principles and procedures for school improvement.

We value our staff and the teaching profession, and believe well qualified, motivated staff are vital to the success of our academies.

We recognise the distinctive character of each academy, giving them flexibility to make decisions that are right for them. We celebrate each academy’s individual identity whilst providing structure challenge and support.

We are focused on supporting schools in our local region. We know the context that Sussex schools are working in, since the university has already worked with many of them for a number of years.

Becoming an academy

Converting a school to academy status can be a daunting task. We have significant experience of academisation, and help schools at every stage of the conversion process, from project management support through the consultation phase to completion of legal documentation.

By taking ownership of the conversion process we aim to allow schools to remain focused on teaching and learning.

Working for the trust

Once a school has converted to academy status, school staff are also employed by the trust rather than the local authority.

Staff may have opportunities to further their careers by moving between our academies if opportunities arise and they wish to do so. Teaching staff contracts all follow national terms and conditions.

All permanent staff and those on a fixed term contract at the time of conversion would be entitled to transfer to the academy if they choose to. TUPE (Transfer of Undertakings (Protection of Employment)) rights would be respected throughout the transfer process and we would undertake a separate consultation.

The day-to-day management of the academy is led by the senior leadership team of the school.