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CEO Briefing May 2020

Well, things have certainly been a little different since I issued my last briefing in the second spring term. Whilst the wider societal impact of the COVID-19 crisis has affected everybody's way of life, we in the state education sector have had the confusing situation of all schools being officially closed (as instructed by the Government), with most schools continuing to remain open (as instructed by the Government). Whilst all of our academies have been coming to terms with a new “normal” over the past 7 weeks, it has been different from one school to the next and most certainly not without its challenges.

It is with great sadness that I have to share the news that one our pupils at Hilltop, Molly Niland, died recently. Molly had been a pupil at Hilltop for a long time and was a much loved child by her class team and the school community. She had been poorly for a while now and sadly passed away at the end of February. Our thoughts and prayers are with her family during this sad time.

I know that many people are having to cope with the loss of loved ones, and many more are struggling with the heightened stresses and anxieties of living through a pandemic and the social distancing measures we’ve had to adopt. I’m therefore sharing details of the the Mental Health Foundation, a charity set up to help support colleagues during this uncertain period. More information can be found at their website: Mental Health - Coronavirus

I can now officially welcome Becton and North Ridge schools into our Trust. Both converted on 1 April, and whilst we’ve been working together for some time now, it’s still great to have them officially part of the Nexus family.

Whilst all of us are readjusting to our changed - and changing - world, we are still continuing to do all we can to put the best offer possible in place for the communities we serve. I am therefore delighted to be welcoming Bridget Coy as the new Head of School at Heatherwood, and Anita Denham as the new Head of School at North Ridge. Both colleagues will be joining us from September, bringing a wealth of experience with them.

Effective governance is an essential factor in the success of any Trust, and in Nexus we have many volunteers who support our governance work. At academy level, we have our Local Governing Bodies. However, it is the Trust Board of Directors who are the legal governors of the MAT and all our academies.

I’m therefore delighted to welcome Naveen Judah and Gill Askew, who have filled the two remaining vacancies on the Board. Naveen was a governor of Hilltop and Kelford back when Nexus was first formed, and has a son who has attended Hilltop for many years. Naveen has for the past 18 months been a governor at Pennine View, so he knows our Trust and our schools well. Gill is a procurement consultant who sought out the opportunity to join the Board so she could make a contribution to the state education system. Directors are unpaid volunteers who carry a lot of legal responsibility for our Trust and our academies, so I’m incredibly grateful that both Naveen and Gill have joined the Board.

Thank you to all our staff for all you're doing in these unprecedented times to support our children and families. Where families need us, we continue to be there for them. I couldn’t be prouder.

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Posted in CEO Briefs on May 07, 2020

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