Q. What differences will attending an academy make to my child?
Your child will notice no difference in the organisation of the school day. Timetables will continue as usual and staff will follow routines as they do now. Teaching has always been monitored and improved as staff implement school policies.
The newly established curriculum will be subject to the same systems of monitoring and review as it is now to make sure it is successful and suited to what children need to learn. We will continue our work on improving the way children learn.
Q. People say that academies receive more money. Is this true?
Academies are funded directly by the government instead of receiving an allocated budget from the Local Authority(LA) . This allocated budget is calculated taking account of the amount which has been removed for centralised services. This is fine for schools where full use is made of the services offered by the LA. However, over recent years Fairfield’s use of centralised services has decreased. One of the advantages of becoming an academy is the freedom to buy services from a wider field which can include the LA. In short the school will be responsible for managing its own total budget.
Q. Will the school lose out by being on its own? Will being an academy mean Fairfield will work in isolation?
The school already works with a group of schools in the surrounding area; sharing expertise and resource information. We have an excellent staff who visit and learn from other teachers who, in their turn, are keen to find out what is happening in Fairfield. As other schools join the MAT then the opportunities to share our expertise and buy best knowledge from further afield for our own development will widen. We recognise the importance of learning from schools outside of Cumbria and we know the importance of looking outward to learn as much as we can to the advantage of our own children.
Q. Will the school uniform change yet again?
No, the school uniform colour and badge will remain as it is now.
Q. What do staff think about conversion to academy?
All staff have been involved in discussion from the first stages ; prior to the final decision being made and have been invited to voice any concerns both individually and as a group. No one has opposed the idea ; deciding that it does not overly affect them. Other staff view it as a career opportunity.. We believe this is healthy thinking: it ensures we keep our ambitious teachers for longer as we have more to offer them, and their expertise becomes recognised on a wider stage.
These are some of the key questions we have been asked. Please send us any other questions you have and they will be included on this page.