Welcome from CEO
Thank you for registering your interest in these important senior leadership roles at Pontefract Academies Trust. I hope that the information provided in this site will be of interest and help you with the application process.
Pontefract Academies Trust is a cross phase Multi Academy Trust comprising of eight schools; six primary schools and two 11-16 secondary schools. The Trust is a medium sized family of schools all located within a tight geographic hub within Pontefract. Pupils are drawn from the local community that includes a mix of different catchment areas.
I have been in post since March 2018 and the Trust has significantly moved forward over the last two years. I am truly excited by what we have achieved in this time and equally look forward to the opportunities that the next phase of our development will bring. The immediate priority in the short term has been to rapidly accelerate pupil outcomes and school improvement in every school across the Trust. Pace and a trajectory of improvement has been an unwavering expectation. In our primary schools we have seen high impact performance, with the best SATs outcomes ever delivered by the Trust. Individually, all six primary schools achieved their highest ever attainment figures in meeting the national standard for reading, writing and maths. From a starting position of 12% below national average, the Trust is now 12% above national average and is the 22nd highest performing Multi Academy Trust in the country on this measure. This performance places three of our primary schools in the top 10 primary schools out of the 100 plus in the Wakefield Local Authority.
In secondary, Carleton High School has been removed from special measures and is now an Ofsted rated “good school”. This is the first time that the school has been graded as good in 10 years. I hope that you can see that the Trust is going places and is an exciting place to be. I urge you to read the Trust Strategic Plan for the period 2020-2022, which can be accessed at the following link:
I wanted to use this message to give you a feel for the culture and guiding principles that I wish to drive across the Trust in conjunction with current and future colleagues, and the type of person that the Trust is looking for from staff at all levels.
To work in the Trust, you must aspire to be an outstanding colleague and be comfortable with high levels of accountability for the progress of all of our pupils. You must be willing to share and learn. You must be prepared to go the extra mile, be a leader not a follower. Above all else, you must like children and young people, and aspire to make them outstanding citizens.
We wish to appoint positive people who want to make a difference. You must be achievement focused and have an explicit focus on driving a high-quality experience for all pupils, leading to high level outcomes. It is simple really; we run our schools for the benefit of pupils, that is why we do the job. We wish to appoint people that understand and believe in our guiding principles and values. We are very keen that our staff understand the characteristics that outstanding institutions inhibit; a no excuse culture, high quality leadership, proper investment in staff development and a resolute refusal to accept the soft bigotry of low expectations. In return, as CEO, it is my intention to offer first class professional development for ambitious people, genuine career development and opportunities. I believe in simple systems executed with absolute precision, a focus on outstanding behaviour so that teachers can teach great lessons and pupils can learn.
If successful, you will be joining the Trust at an exciting time where you can help further shape the organisation. It is not over ambitious to say that we are building something transformational in Pontefract and we want to be joined by people that share a passion for improving social mobility and who want to make a difference day in and day out. Our young people need skills and qualifications to operate in an increasingly competitive workplace. To this end, our role in improving the life chances of the young people in our communities should never be underestimated.
Finally, thank you once again for your interest in the Pontefract Academies Trust and the position available. I hope that this introductory letter has given you a clear sense of our culture and ethos, as well as a feel of what we are looking for. If you decide to apply, we do appreciate how long it takes to apply for jobs but please do not send a general letter; we are looking for someone who is prepared to respond to us appreciating where we are at on our journey as a Trust. You can be sure that we will take time and care in reading your application form and covering letter.
Please get in touch with Martin Blair at Hays Leadership on 07736791138 or at email@example.com for a private and confidential discussion about either role or to discuss making an application.
I look forward to hearing from you and exploring your future with us through our selection process.
Julian Appleyard OBE
Chief Executive Officer
Pontefract Academies Trust
Halfpenny Lane Junior, Infant & Nursery School
Halfpenny Lane Junior, Infant & Nursery School is a vibrant 3-11, two form entry primary school. The school is one of the largest primary schools in the Wakefield Local Authority. The vacancy of Headteacher comes about due to the current postholder taking up another headship within the Trust. The school is in a strong place with firm foundations in place as evidenced by the 'good' Ofsted inspection of 2019. In the 2019 SATs, Halfpenny Lane was the 9th highest attaining primary school of the 101 schools across Wakefield with combined outcomes of 84%. The attainment in reading, writing and mathematics for the year was significantly above national.
The school converted to academy status in 2013 when it joined Pontefract Academies Trust. Like all schools across the Trust, Halfpenny Lane benefits from strong formal collaboration with the other five primary schools, all of which are within approximately a three-mile radius. The alignment of systems and practices allows teachers and leaders to collaborate far more easily and this has resulted in improved outcomes for pupils in the communities that the Trust serves.
Contextually, Halfpenny Lane is below the national average for pupils on free school meals and below the national average for pupils with SEND support. Prior attainment of pupils is in line with the national average.
There is lots of further information available at https://halfpenny.patrust.org.uk/
De Lacy Primary School
De Lacy Primary School is a one and a half form entry primary academy. The aim at De Lacy is to provide every pupil with the necessary skills for life and high-quality learning experiences that are both challenging and rewarding. When the children leave the school, they should be caring, self-disciplined, independent learners who are committed to their learning and the development of an increasing responsibility to themselves and as a member of the community.
Current performance at De Lacy is such that outcomes need to improve with some urgency. The newly appointed Headteacher, who took up post from within the Trust, and governors appreciate this and the new Deputy Headteacher will have significant support to drive the school forward with a sense of urgency.
All staff at De Lacy work together to promote a caring, friendly and safe community within a stimulating and secure environment to develop those spiritual, moral, cultural and social values that are so important to the children’s future.
High self-esteem, mutual respect, understanding, tolerance and good manners are just some examples of such values. The pupils are encouraged to achieve success by realising their talents and full potential in a climate where achievements are recognised and celebrated and where contributions are both valued and shared with others. The school promotes individuality in both learning and teaching while realising the need for a consistent, cooperative whole school approach.
There is lots of further information available at https://delacy.patrust.org.uk/
Pontefract Academies Trust is a cross phase Multi Academy Trust comprising of eight schools; six primary schools and two 11-16 secondary schools. The Trust is a medium sized family of schools all located within a tight geographic hub within Pontefract. Pupils are drawn from the local community that includes a mix of different catchment areas. Each school is individual and responds to the needs of its local community to provide the best possible opportunity for its young people. However, being part of a Multi Academy Trust means each school can benefit from shared resources and systems that allow collaboration for the benefit of the children and young people.
Each of the schools in the Trust have their own internal self-evaluation schedule and school improvement plan. They each have different priorities, depending on what stage they are at on their school improvement journey. There are several improvement themes that are Trust wide priorities and these focus upon the implementation and embedding of the new reading strategy, improving outcomes for disadvantaged pupils and the further development of new cross phase curriculum plans.
All of the schools in the Trust benefit from strong formal collaboration with the other five primary schools, all of which are within approximately a three-mile radius. The alignment of systems and practices allows teachers and leaders to collaborate far more easily and this has resulted in improved outcomes for pupils in the communities that the Trust serves.
Running top-quality, high-achieving schools that give our children and young people the chance in life they deserve.
Where every child and young person makes outstanding progress.
Core Values and Guiding Principles
- Achievement without excuses
- Our people matter
- Excellence as standard
- Pupils come first
- “Stronger as one”
There is lots of further information available at www.pontefractacademiestrust.org.uk/
Headteacher at Halfpenny Lane Junior, Infant & Nursery School
Leadership 18b-24b (£64,143 - £74,295). Starting point will be determined by the experience of the successful candidate
The Headteacher will take overall responsibility for the leadership and management of every aspect of the primary school. They will establish a culture of outstanding teaching and learning, an ethos of high expectations and a nurturing yet rigorous approach to behaviour management. The overall purpose of the role is to ensure an outstanding quality of education for all children in the school.
Closing date: 8am, Monday 8th March
Deputy Headteacher at De Lacy Primary School
L10 – L14 (£52723 - £58135). Starting point will be determined by the experience of the successful candidate.
Together with the School Performance Review Board (SPRB), Executive Leadership Team (ELT) and local stakeholders the Deputy Headteacher of School (DHT) should further develop and sustain the school’s ethos and strategic direction. It is also expected that the Deputy Headteacher would deputise for the Headteacher in their absence.
As a member of the senior leadership team the DHT should be prepared to lead on standards and expectations, curriculum enhancement, staff professional development, tracking and analysis of results/data, behaviour management, inclusion, timetabling, external relations and community links, budgeting and finance and wider stakeholder engagement including secondary colleagues within the Trust.
Closing date: 8am, Monday 8th March
How to apply
For further information, an informal and confidential discussion about the role or to discuss the application process please contact Martin Blair at Hays Leadership Appointments.