Executive head returns to Acle Academy weeks after leaving over funding concerns

Acle Academy. Picture: ANTONY KELLY

Acle Academy. Picture: ANTONY KELLY - Credit: Archant

The executive headteacher of a struggling academy who resigned last month, just weeks into the job, is now returning to the school.

Gerard Batty.

Gerard Batty. - Credit: Archant

Gerard Batty, who is also executive head of Hellesdon High School, took over at Acle Academy in January, shortly before an Ofsted report put it in special measures.

He also leads the Hellesdon High-based Wensum Trust, which was planning to take over Acle Academy as sponsor.

However, he resigned from his position at Acle last month, and the Wensum Trust suspended its work with the school, over concerns about the funded needed to bring Acle's infrastructure up to scratch.

Now, following talks with the Department for Education over Easter, Mr Batty has written to Acle parents to say 'the trust is now in a stronger position to provide additional and immediate support to Acle Academy'.


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He will now return as executive head, increasing his time at the school from two days a week to four, until at least the end of term.

He said there were 'various funding pots which we have managed to get some money from to do the basic things', and a grant for new academy sponsors would allow it to install a new management and information system by September.

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Asked about Acle Academy's long term future, Mr Batty said it would 'definitely' still exist in five years time.

Acle's governors were due to meet last night to decide the future leadership structure at the school.

A Department for Education spokesman said: 'The regional schools commissioner continues to work closely with the school to ensure a swift resolution to the trust arrangements. Our main concern is that pupils have stability and standards improve rapidly.'

Do you have an education story? Email martin.george@archant.co.uk

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