Whitby secondary schools propose to federate

Whitby’s two secondary schools are proposing to federate so they can move forward together to create the best possible education and new sixth form provision for young people in the area.

Andy Fyfe and Gillian Teanby and Pen Cruz and Simon Riley

The governors of Eskdale School and Caedmon College Whitby are today launching a consultation about forming a federation. 

The federation, which would be called ‘The Whitby Secondary Partnership’, would establish a stable and collaborative structure for the schools to provide high standards of secondary education for all students in the Whitby area. 

The move has strong backing from key stakeholders in the area including Robert Goodwill, MP for Scarborough and Whitby, and Sir Martin Narey who chairs the North Yorkshire Coast Opportunity Area which was established by the Government to raise aspirations among young people on the coast. 

Opportunity Area funding would be put forward for a major redevelopment of Whitby’s sixth form provision.

The federation would maintain two separate 11-16 schools on the current Eskdale and Normanby sites, and establish a new Whitby Sixth Form centre on the Scoresby site from September 2019.  The federation would comprise a single governing body, overseeing two separate schools, each retaining separate staff, headteachers, buildings and budgets. 

Both governing bodies are convinced that the federation would build on the existing strengths and cultures of each school while enabling them to improve the quality of teaching and learning, further raising standards and outcomes for the area’s young people. 

“This is good for the students and good for the town” said Gillian Teanby, Eskdale’s chair of governors.  “We are focused on continuing to improve the quality of education and this is a big step forward.”

“Through federation we can work together to enrich and strengthen educational opportunities for all students and develop a cohesive strategy for the future of secondary education in Whitby” said Pen Cruz, Caedmon’s chair of governors.

“I am delighted at the approach being taken by both schools”, said Cllr Patrick Mulligan, North Yorkshire’s Executive Member for Schools

“It is to the huge credit of the head teachers and governing bodies that they have put aside the past to collaborate in the best interests of all children and young people in Whitby to ensure that there is a sustainable approach to education.

“I really hope the community gets behind this as it can only work with parents, children and young people choosing local secondary and sixth form as the right choice for them.”

Sir Martin Narey, Chair of the North Yorkshire Coast Social Mobility Opportunity Area said: “I’m very pleased at the progress that has been made in this last eighteen months in improving the social mobility prospects for children and young people on the North Yorkshire coast.

“But nothing has been more important than ensuring that Whitby has a top class sixth form. I am delighted at, and hugely admire, the outstanding cooperation between Eskdale and Caedmon’s  governing bodies and heads, working together to ensure we shall have a new and better sixth form in Whitby. 

“And to ensure the new sixth form is able to match the ambitions both of the schools have for their children, I’m delighted that the Opportunity Area budget will be used to contribute to a major redevelopment of the new sixth form.”

Robert Goodwill, MP said: “This is a fantastic outcome for education in Whitby. I am hopeful that this approach will secure the long term future of both schools and a new jointly governed sixth form centre.

“The federation of both schools demonstrates a significant joint commitment to provide the best education and opportunity across the town. This is great news for the future of children and young people in the area.”

The consultation starts on Friday 7th December 2018 and will finish at 4pm on Friday 1st February 2019.   

This story was published 7 December 2018