Free School Announcement
New Secondary School for Archway Learning Trust given Green Light to proceed
Proposals for a new secondary school led by Archway Learning Trust have today been given the green light by the Department for Education. Archway Learning Trust submitted an application for the new school in October 2018 and on Thursday 30th May 2019, in a reception held at 10 Downing Street, representatives from Archway received confirmation that the bid has been approved and Bluecoat Trent Academy will open in September 2021.
Archway Learning Trust (formerly Bluecoat Academies Trust) was formed in April 2014. It built upon the very long and successful history of Bluecoat Academy. The Trust is now comprised of Bluecoat Aspley Academy, Bluecoat Wollaton Academy, Bluecoat Beechdale Academy, The Nottingham Emmanuel School and Bluecoat Primary Academy. Archway has a record of school improvement with all of the schools in the Trust currently rated good or outstanding by Ofsted (the Primary has yet to be inspected).
The new free school, named Bluecoat Trent Academy will be an eight form entry secondary school based in the heart of Nottingham City and underpinned by the values and ethos of all the Archway academies.
Sian Hampton, CEO of Archway Learning Trust, Free School welcomed the news:
“I am absolutely delighted to have been approved to open Bluecoat Trent Academy and see this as a real sign of confidence by the Department of Education in the high quality provision that can be expected when attending an Archway school. I am especially excited about building this school, supported by a number of partners including Nottingham Trent University. It is wonderful to be able to provide this fantastic opportunity for so many city children. I am really grateful to all those who have worked so hard to gain this approval, including the Local Authority, local school leaders and trustees. The trust team have just been incredible and worked so hard on this bid!”
Nottingham City has seen a significant increase in the demand for primary places in recent years and this increase is now starting to move into secondary schools. Archway schools are already oversubscribed with record appeals taking place again this year. Over 200 families have already come forward to support our free school proposals and express interest in their children attending Bluecoat Trent Academy. We look forward to working with these families and the local community as we move towards September 2021, when we will open our gates for the first time to 240 Year 7s from the local area.
Tracy Rees, Trust Chair commented:
“Archway Learning Trust is passionately committed to raising aspirations and improving life chances of the young people of Nottingham, with this desire, local knowledge and the demand on school places, Archway Learning Trust can build on the experience and strengths of the Trust and its family to expand the provision of outstanding secondary education in Nottingham City.”
Luke Tryl, Director of New Schools Network, said:
“The application process to set up a free school is extremely rigorous, so it is a testament to Archway Learning Trust’s hard work that they have been approved to open.
“Today’s announcement is great news for families across the country. These approvals mean that some of the areas most desperately in need of greater educational opportunity will soon have innovative and successful new schools opening their doors to these communities. We congratulate all approved schools and look forward to helping them through the pre-opening process.”