Federation Consultation

Consultation on the Proposal to Federate

Cledford Primary School and Gainsborough Primary & Nursery School


Cledford Chair: Julie Sercombe

Gainsborough Chair: Kate Birchall

Federation Headteacher: Jane Booth


Formal Consultation Period: 3rd May 2017 to 14th June 2017

From the governing boards of Cledford Primary School & Gainsborough Primary & Nursery School,


Dear Families,

As you are aware, Cledford Primary School and Gainsborough Primary & Nursery School have been successfully working in a partnership since April 2015.

The governing boards of both schools have voted in favour of proceeding to public consultation on a proposal to establish a federation between the two schools with effect from 1st September 2017.

The aim of the federation is to offer an even better quality of education to the children of our communities. We can adapt and design a curriculum that meets the needs of the pupils which provides them with knowledge and first hand experiences which school leaders believe helps them learn best.

  • Federation will continue to provide a learning culture and environment that is in the best interests for the children at both schools.
  • There will continue to be one Federation Headteacher across both schools.
  • A federation is NOT a merger.
  • Each school will retain its own name, ethos and values; have separate pupil attainment data and separate OFSTED inspections.
  • School leaders and governors will continue to track children’s progress and attainment at each school, and have the highest expectation of standards in both achievement and behaviour.
  • Existing staff will keep the same terms and conditions of employment.
  • There will be opportunities for increased efficiencies through economies of scale by joint purchasing and shared deployed resources, including staff.
  • A federation will enable the schools to continue to recruit and retain the best teachers offering them experiences to share ideas and develop best practice with increased opportunities for career development, training and management responsibilities.
  • Each school will continue to oversee their finances with each receiving and managing its own budget.
  • There will be a single governing board across both schools. A single governing board will be able to take a strategic view of the needs of both schools.

The two schools have been working together in collaboration for the last 4 terms. Their work together has been very successful and there have been clear benefits to both schools. The two schools share very similar values and a vision for the future. The governors of both schools propose to develop the partnership through the institution of a federation.

There is an increasing body of evidence for the benefits of close collaboration between schools. These include the following:


The collaboration between Gainsborough and Cledford has meant that expertise has been shared to the benefit of both sets of pupils. An outstanding member of staff from Gainsborough, for example, has coached newly qualified staff at Cledford. Shared leadership has meant that systems and protocols that are proven to work and to impact on pupil progress can be implemented in both schools, for example, monitoring and evaluating teacher performance and data analysis.

Joint training events have enabled both schools to share costs and networking across the schools has made an impact on assessment moderation and access to resources as well as on staff well-being.

The current term’s joint projects include a safeguarding audit and a growth mindset project. Future plans include a sports festival and an arts project.

A proposed reconstituted federated governing board model is attached to this consultation. You can find out more by looking at each respective school’s website and the attached Frequently Asked Questions document.

The period of consultation lasts six weeks. These proposals are made with the support of the Local Authority, both governing boards and the Federation Headteacher. During this time the responses to the consultation will be collected and collated by a joint governing board working party for consideration by the two governing boards, after which the governing boards will vote on whether to proceed with the federation. 

You can make your views known by writing to the Clerk to The Governors at either school or by emailing admin@cledford.cheshire.sch.uk or admin@gainsborough.cheshire.sch.uk

Consultation evenings will be arranged for both schools. The date for Gainsborough is Monday 12th June. There will be two oppotunities for parents to talk to governors and senior leaders at 3.15 pm and 6.15 pm in the school hall. 

The consultation will close at midday on Wednesday 14th June 2017.


On behalf of the two governing boards:

Kate Birchall - Chair of Governors, Gainsborough Primary & Nursery School

Julie Sercombe - Chair of Governors, Cledford Primary School


Please click on the attached document below for further details and frequently asked questions. 

Files to Download

Be Ready:

- To Listen and Learn
- To Share
- To Follow Instructions
- To Work Hard and Do Your Best
- To Help and Be Kind

Be Respectful:

- Think About Others
- Use Good Manner
- Choose the Right Behavious
- Talk to Others in the Right Way
- Accept and Celebrate our Differences

Be Safe:

- Play and Learn Safely
- Report Bullying or Unkind Behaviour
- Move Around School Carefully
- Tell an Adult if You Don't Feel Safe
- Look After Each Other

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