Dear Parents and Carers,
As Chief Executive, I wanted to share good news from the Trust which has a direct bearing on Workington Academy. For some time now, we have been considering how we best provide more support to the three secondary schools within Cumbria Education Trust – Workington Academy, The Whitehaven Academy and William Howard School in Brampton. To that end, we are creating a new position of Interim Director of Secondary Education, to mirror the role we have supporting our eight primary schools.
I am pleased to share with you that following a rigorous internal recruitment and selection process, we have appointed Des Bird to this position. Des will not be leaving the academy. Alongside two days a week in his new role, he will become Executive Headteacher of Workington Academy and retain operational responsibility for the academy, its students and staff. He will be supported by the experienced management team at Workington Academy and current Deputy Headteacher Mark Bedford will take on a new role of Head of School, assisting with day-to-day operational management.
Both changes are with immediate effect and run until 31st August 2023. I’m sure you will join me in wishing both Des and Mark continued success.
It is in part due to the results and improvements Des and his team have delivered at Workington Academy over the last four years that he has been selected for this important new role. During that time the academy’s popularity with families has continued to climb, to the point where in September we will have a record Year 7 intake of almost 270, taking our student numbers to a record high of 1,200. This represents an increase of more than 50% in four years. Academic achievement has also continued an upward trend, and more and more of our students are gaining places at top universities and sought-after apprenticeships.
The academy’s facilities have been further developed, including the recent opening of the new outdoor sports pitches, and we have strengthened the post-16 education offer with the joint West Coast Sixth Form with The Whitehaven Academy.
As a multi-academy Trust, collaboration is one of our strengths, and we firmly believe that schools operate better ‘as one’. These new appointments will ensure we can continue to develop Workington Academy and deliver on our core promise that we support all our students to ‘be the best they can be’.
If you would like more information on the new roles and the changes at Workington Academy, then please do not hesitate to contact me.
Chief Executive – Cumbria Education Trust