Worle Community School Academy is set to join one of Britain’s biggest and most successful academy trusts

Worle Community School Academy is set to join one of Britain’s biggest and most successful academy trusts

By Jill Dando News

Worle Community School Academy in Weston-super-Mare, Somerset - the home of Jill Dando News - will transfer from The Priory Learning Trust (TPLT) to United Learning in the autumn.

It follows the announcement of a proposed merger of TPLT back in January with CSET and the formation of a new Pathways Trust which is currently going through procedures.

After WCSA was inspected by Ofsted in December, despite inspectors finding that leaders were making improvements in many areas, they said that greater consistency was required for the school to be considered Good. 

Since then, as it was the second consecutive Requires Improvement judgement at Worle, the school was assessed by the Department for Education under their intervention process. 

The school will now prepare for the new partnership in the proposed arrangement with a series of meet-the-Trust meetings.

WCSA Principal Mark Tidman said: “United Learning is a highly successful school trust, with an excellent track record of improving schools across the country. 

“As a large organisation, they have substantial expertise and capacity to support school improvement. 

“At the same time, their approach recognises the unique context of each school community. 

“We believe that United Learning will therefore be able to build on the existing strengths of Worle and the improvements that leaders have already secured, whilst having the scale as a large trust to strengthen outcomes and achieve the 'Good' inspection judgement that the local community deserves.”

Will Roberts - Interim Chief Executive of TPLT, said: “Whilst we are sorry that Worle will no longer be part of the TPLT family of schools, we will continue to work in close partnership with other local schools in Weston-Super-Mare. 

“We are looking forward to building new relationships with United Learning schools, especially as they extend their network in the South West with a new hub of schools in the Somerset area.”

WCSA will shortly be arranging an opportunity for parents and carers to meet leaders from United Learning to hear more about the Trust and how they will work with WCSA.

Mr Roberts added: “The Trust is keen to meet staff, pupils and families to understand more about the school and local community. 

“TPLT and United Learning have already started working together to ensure there is a smooth transition for Worle over the coming months. 

“We want to reassure you that in the meantime, our daily focus will remain on our pupils, and especially those who are preparing for their final examinations over the coming weeks.”

WCSA is the home of Jill Dando News. The timely Jill Dando News was launched in 2017 out of Jill’s former school in Weston-super-Mare, Somerset. 

Expanding ever since, Jill Dando News now benefits hundreds of children aged 7 to 18 in spreading good, ethical news across Somerset and as far reaching as Africa, a continent Jill had a big heart for. 

In the photos the school’s Jill Dando News students are pictured recently at the school welcoming and interviewing the mayor of Weston-super-Mare and then with MP John Penrose at Westminster shortly before they made history by interviewing Mr Speaker Sir Lindsay Hoyle.

It trains up real-life journalists and brilliant people of the future to find, write and post positive good news stories, with training by professional journalists including Nigel Dando, Fiona Bruce and others from BBC, ITV and Sky News. 

Their positive stories are posted to the Good News Post online newspaper www.goodnewspost.co.uk, and then to the wider Media.

The fast-expanding project has been backed by two Prime Ministers, Mr Speaker, Sir Richard Branson, Sir Cliff Richard and a host of other world figures in a world of bad news and rocketing mental health issues.

Jill Dando News reporters made history to became the first journalists in the world to interview the then new Prime Minister Boris Johnson in August 2019 and have interviewed hundreds of people and written countless positive good news stories.

Olivia Finch, 19, was the first ever Jill Dando News reporter then aged 12 at Worle Academy, and is now studying to be a doctor at Bristol University.

This newspaper the Good News Post was launched in 2016 to become a local, national and international newspaper of good news, and has an expanding team of Jill Dando Journalists who write many of the stories.

Read more