Our Vision

Vision Statement

A family of Catholic schools, inspired by Jesus, to love learn and achieve.

 

Strategic Plan 2020 -2023

Introduction  

Welcome to Romero Catholic Academy Trust.  We are one of three multi academy trusts established by the Catholic Diocese of Salford.  We serve the schools in the north of the diocese which includes diocesan schools within the local authorities of Lancashire, Blackburn with Darwen and Calderdale. 

As a Catholic academy trust, our first duty is to maintain and develop our schools as living faith communities inspired by the gospel.  However, each will brings its own individual context, character and ethos and we welcome and celebrate this uniqueness.

The trust includes some schools with directive academy orders but most are voluntary convertors who have taken the decision to become an academy.  However, all are inspired to work more closely within our family of schools to achieve the best outcomes for our pupils and to support, and gain support, from each other. Our shared outlook is reflected in share policies, where appropriate.

Effective governance lies at the heart of our trust.  The professional board of directors, with a wide and relevant skill set and who are approved by the bishop, support and challenge our schools.  In addition, local governing bodies play a highly important role providing scrutiny and decision-making at an individual school level.  However, fundamental to the success of our schools are the headteachers and their staff. We believe that headteachers are central to thriving and successful schools.  Our role is to support and challenge and provide the resources for this to happen.

It is through our central team that the main support for schools is provided.  With the CEO, there is a finance officer, school improvement lead, HR support and policy development.  We also have strategic partnerships with legal support, payroll and recruitment as well as strong links with the diocese.

 

Vision and Values

Romero Catholic Academy Trust is a family of Catholic schools serving the needs of children and young people in the Diocese of Salford, covering the areas of Lancashire, Blackburn with Darwen and Calderdale. Responding to the challenge of our patron saint we; ‘aspire not to have more, but to be more.’

To achieve this, we will uphold four key values:

Faith: to nurture our belief in God

Service: to live out the responsibilities of our faith by serving others

Aspiration: to aspire to fulfil the potential of each individual, created uniquely in the image of God

Collaboration: to work collaboratively; sharing and fostering the strengths and expertise of all.

Faith
• Inspired by the vision of Bishop John, we will provide an authentic passing-on of our Catholic faith.
• Our schools will be nurtured by the Word of God.
• Our pupils will come to an understanding of what it means to be loved by God and the responsibilities that come from loving God.
• Our schools are worshipping communities characterised by vibrant liturgy and prayer.

Service
• We will always act in the service of the pupils in our care.
• In our schools we will educate our children to be the next generation of the stewards of God’s creation.
• We embrace Catholic social teaching and work for the Common Good with a preferential option for the poor.
• We are outward facing, acknowledge our place in the wider educational system and accept our civic responsibility.

Aspiration
• We will work to fulfil the potential of each member of our community by providing an education that develops the whole person, including high quality Religious Education.
• Our schools will have a relentless focus on achievement. The quality of education in our schools will be ‘at least as academically distinguished as that in the other schools of the area.’ (Can. 806.2)
• Every member of our community will be provided with the knowledge, skills and attitudes needed to succeed in school and in the next stage of their lives.
• Through high quality and relevant continuing professional development, we will invest in our staff.
• Decision making will weigh up the Common Good and be made in a timely way.
• We will always focus on the solution to a problem.

Collaboration
• A spirit of solidarity leads us to accept a shared responsibility for all.
• We recognise the concept of subsidiarity; that decisions will be made as locally as possible.
• Improvements across our family of schools will be secured by utilising the skills and experience in the trust
• Wherever possible, we will take care to involve and inform people in decision making.
• We believe in the importance of open, honest and positive communication.

 

Our Academies

Primary

Christ the King RC Primary, a Voluntary Academy, Burnley

Sacred Heart RC Primary, a Voluntary Academy, Colne

St Augustine’s of Canterbury RC Primary, a Voluntary Academy.  Burnley

St John the Baptist RC Primary, a Voluntary Academy. Burnley 

St Joseph’s RC Primary, a Voluntary Academy, Todmorden

St Mary Magadalene’s RC Primary, a Voluntary Academy, Burnley

St Mary’s RC Primary, A Voluntary Academy,  Bacup 

Secondary

All Saints Catholic High School, a Voluntary Academy.  Rawtenstall

Blessed Trinity Roman Catholic College, a Voluntary Academy.  Burnley

 

Strategic Aim 1: Mission and Ethos

Through our Catholic faith, promote the academic, spiritual, emotional and social growth of the individual child and young person

OBJECTIVES

1.1 To ensure strong links between school and parish

1.2 To ensure all academies are well prepared for the Diocesan Section 48 Inspection 

1.3 To enable schools to participate in the wider life of the Trust and the Diocese

1.4 To provide opportunities for all pupils and staff to deepen and explore their faith 

1.5 To ensure that Religious Education is a high priority core subject in schools

1.6 To ensure Catholic social teaching is embedded in the curriculum and the life of the school including our responsibilities for the environment and care for our common home.

 

Strategic Aim 2: Teaching, Learning and Assessment

To ensure that all our academies provide the very best teaching in order to promote and provide high quality learning for all our children and young people and ensuring that there is support in place for teachers to achieve this. We aim to develop ‘life-long learners’ who have a thirst for knowledge as a result of high quality teaching and assessment.

OBJECTIVES

2.1 To implement a CPD programme that ensures that all our staff have the right skills to raise standards further, deliver good teaching and learning and disseminate good practice to ensure rapid improvement

2.2 To secure high quality teaching and learning

2.3 To ensure every academy has a relevant, rich and broad curriculum

2.4 To ensure that all vulnerable groups make at least good progress

2.5 To use assessment proportionately to inform and progress children’s learning.

 

Strategic Aim 3: Academy Improvement

To establish a self-sustaining, system-led, collaborative approach to improvement that enables rapid improvement where required

OBJECTIVES

3.1 To establish a self-sustaining, system-led collaborative approach to improvement that enables rapid improvement when required

3.2 To develop school-to-school support for leadership

3.3 To build effective links to outstanding providers outside of the Trust to support continuing improvement

3.4 To ensure all schools operate effective quality assurance and self-evaluation

3.5 To ensure that all schools have effective development planning leading to improvement

3.6 To enhance the Trust’s ability to develop the next generation of school leaders in both phases

3.7 To ensure all schools are well prepared for Ofsted inspection 

Growth and Development Plan

Aims
Romero Catholic Academy Trust was established to develop a network of Catholic schools within the Diocese of Salford across the local authorities of Blackburn with Darwen, Calderdale and Lancashire to become a sustainable family of schools that have share responsibility for all our pupils and seek to work collaboratively to achieve the best outcomes for all our pupils.
We recognise that it is a strength of the Trust that schools have their own ethos and unique character.  We recognise there will be local context in which they work and that working collaboratively does not mean that schools will be based on a ‘template’.  
 
Due Diligence 
Schools that convert voluntarily into Romero Catholic Academy Trust have to provide a clear risk assessment to the Board for academic standards, finance and premise.  This will include the DfE requirement for Integrated Financial Curriculum Planning and benchmarking programmes providing a number of performance measures through which schools can compare their costs and check if they are managing resources and finances effectively. The Trust acknowledges the usefulness of the tool but also recognises its limitations, for example, it focuses largely on teacher costs, without factoring in wider pastoral or curriculum issues or the resources provided by teaching assistants and other support and ancillary staff. Therefore the Trust will balance the use of the financial indicators with other measures.
With schools that join the Trust with Directive Academy orders (DAO), we have a responsibility to ensure they remain within the Catholic family of schools but balance this our wider obligations to the other schools in the Trust.  As a result, a DAO school would have to be prepared to accept rapid improvement plans for their staffing and curriculum where this is required.
 
Central Support
As the Trust grows, a dedicated central executive team will be established to replace the service level agreement currently in place with schools and providers.  As part of the planned growth, this team’s capacity will increase to meet the needs of the schools.  Initially, the team will consist of seconded posts but this will transfer to employed posts in due course.  The Central Team will initially include the CEO, the finance officer, HR and school improvement as the core offer.  This will be supported by administration support and the role of governance and policy.  The number of people in each will increase with the number of schools joining the Trust.  The Trust will also have SLAs and long-term business relationships with a number of partners including payroll, legal and premises.  
The management fee paid by the schools to funs the central team will be top sliced by the Trust from the GAG only.   This is partially offset by the savings schools make from existing SLAs. The management fee will be reviewed through the Headteachers’ Forum, from time to time.
 
Staggered conversions
If several schools are seeking to join the Trust at the same time, the Board would consider staggering the date of conversion so that the Trust can manage the conversion properly and conduct robust consultation and due diligence.  This also allows for the local authority to manage the conversion within their capacity.