An Invitation to Join Thomas Telford Multi Academy Trust

Thu, 06 Dec 2018

In September 2017 Thomas Telford Multi Academy Trust (TTMAT) was established, legally binding together a group of local schools that have all been highly successful in delivering a unique educational provision for young people from Telford and the West Midlands since the early 1990s.

Thomas Telford School, Madeley Academy, Walsall Academy and Sandwell Academy have worked collaboratively as a family of schools since they each opened and together have achieved remarkable success.

Young people have been able to achieve some of the highest educational outcomes in the country while others have made outstanding progress and the destinations and ongoing achievements of alumni students are uniformly impressive.

Most recently TTMAT has added its first primary school to the family and in September 2018 welcomed Redhill Primary Academy. This has already broadened the opportunities for children across the MAT.

It all started back in 1991, when Thomas Telford School was built as one of 15 national pioneering CTC schools. Under the leadership of Sir Kevin Satchwell, Thomas Telford School was soon recognised as the highest performing comprehensive school in the country, benefitting the children that attended.

The work of the School quickly extended beyond its own grounds and started to fulfil one of its key objectives “to share research with neighbouring schools and the educational community and, where possible, support collaborative developments locally”.

After developing and sharing its own online IT curriculum to schools across the country, the financial benefits were used to support Specialist Schools Status for numerous schools across the Black Country, which levered in approximately £5 million additional funding for schools in the local area.

When the government, at the turn of the century, promoted the idea of academy schools, Thomas Telford School became sponsors of the brand new Walsall Academy (opened in 2003) and Sandwell Academy (opened 2006).

In 2008, the already successful federation with Madeley Court School was further enhanced as Madeley Academy was established, another academy sponsored by Thomas Telford School.

The new academies secured circa £100 million in capital build projects, providing state-of-the-art learning environments for over 3,000 students.

Given the opportunities that academy status presented, the four schools have been able to work closely on developing curriculum content across subjects, providing professional and career development across the schools, sharing common systems and routines and collaborating at leadership level to tackle the educational challenges of the day.

The relationship between the schools has been further enhanced and formalised with the creation of TTMAT and plans to grow the group into a small MAT of approximately four or five local secondary schools and four or five local primary schools are in place.

Expansion is particularly planned in the primary sector with Redhill Primary Academy playing a crucial role in developing TTMAT’s expertise to support schools that may wish to join.

The benefits of working across sectors has been quick to see with students and staff sharing facilities, expertise and ideas in core subjects, performing arts and sport within weeks.

Unlike other multi academy trusts, TTMAT encourages high levels of autonomy and accountability for the heads in each of its schools and operates an efficient and slim central service which reduces the necessity to top slice from the school budget, whilst providing support, advice and challenge as appropriate.

There is an exciting future for TTMAT schools in the years ahead, which will undoubtedly build upon the considerable student success and achievements of Thomas Telford and its family of schools.

Opportunities for even greater numbers of children in Telford to benefit are sure to follow.

Interested schools wishing to join TTMAT should contact Sir Kevin Satchwell at Thomas Telford School.

News List