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Issue 1 Spring 2018

The staff magazine of The Cam Academy Trust

Welcome to the first issue of TrustEd As the Trust grows it becomes more important than ever that we work together to share ideas, best practice, success stories and generally collaborate to ensure the best possible outcomes for the students in our care.

Of course, we also want the best for our staff and strive to offer relevant Professional Development opportunities, training and flexibility. Our most important resource is our people and we want all of you to feel supported and able to do your vital job as well as possible.

Finally, in these challenging financial times, we also need to be clearer than ever that we are making the best use of all our resources and share ways that groups, departments and individuals make what resources they have go as far as possible.

If you have an idea for an article or picture we could use in a future edition — about yourself, a colleague, group or department in any of our schools — please do let us know by emailing Stephen Munday, CEO

Two primary schools poised to join us

The Cam Academy Trust is looking set to welcome two further primary schools during this year. Everton Heath Primary School, a small school (that is moving from being a first school to becoming a full primary), has completed its formal consultation and has been approved by the Regional Schools Commissioner’s Office. It is located just over the Cambridgeshire border in Bedfordshire and is very close to Gamlingay. Thongsley Fields Primary and Nursery School, which is close to St Peter’s School in Huntingdon, has completed its formal consultation and has confirmed its proposal to become an Academy and join The Cam Academy Trust. This proposal now has to go to the Headteacher Board of the Regional School Commissioner for approval.

These developments clearly fit with our agreed way of developing the Trust. The schools are local to where our schools already work.

It is great to see further primary school presence in the Trust likely to happen. We have been very clear that we want to be a fully cross-phase Trust that works with young people in the local area throughout the whole of their formal schooling years. There are further primary schools in the local area who have asked us to discuss with them the possibilities that being part of the Trust might bring for them. Again, any such further developments, if they happen, would be in keeping with the identity of our Trust.

What’s inside your new magazine

l Page 2 — CPD Update, Cover Supervisor Training, IT  Strategy l Page 3 — Understanding the role of Trustees l Page 4 — New Logo marks New Chapter l Page 5 — Hartford pioneers Apprentice Scheme l Pages 6 & 7 — Focus on China and Mandarin

l Page 8 —St Peter’s rising to the challenge, CEO goes walkabout l Page 9 — Cambourne is Growing Up l Page 10 — For the Love of Books l Page 11 — Food for Thought l Page 12 — Gender Pay Report published

The Cam Academy Trust (01223) 262503

Programmes drive Trust CPD offer


Matt Mannas, Advanced Skills Teacher (AST) in ICT and computer science and a Specialist Leader in Education (SLE) at Comberton Village College, has taken part in the Peterborough Learning Partnership report to explain the work he is carrying out on Continued Professional Development (CPD).

is on pedagogy, the method and practice of teaching, especially as an academic subject or theoretical concept which advances participants’ critical thinking and approach to delivery.

In the report, Matt explains: “We have developed two programmes - Developing Effective Teaching (DET) and Developing Outstanding Teaching (DOT). To ensure they are as useful and specific as possible, we have tailored specific primary and secondary courses for both.”

“For it to be a success, it is important to engage headteachers and senior leaders and have them on board and many heads have commented on the marked improvement in the teachers who have attended the training. The best form of advertising is the success stories of the teachers that have been on the course — this is continuing to help the courses to build credibility and probably the major factor in a number of other Trusts wanting to offer these courses to their own staff.”

Matt works closely with his colleague, Iain Walker (AST in English and SLE for CPD) and together they have looked at ways The Cam Academy Trust can further support CPD. The courses they have developed have now been fully adopted by the Cambridge Teaching School Network.

Matt works closely with schools across Cambridgeshire and some in Essex too. The courses usually have 11 delegates, from within the Trust and external organisations, and take place over four days. Matt continues: “During the training year we also deliver specific additional training to school-centered initial teacher training throughout Cambridgeshire, as well as offering cover supervisors specific teaching and learning training.

“One change we made to the delivery of the courses is to vary their location as we realised that teachers do not always have the time to visit other schools. Observations sit at the heart of each course and we feel that the best way to share excellent teaching and learning is by enabling delegates to experience a range of contexts at different schools.

There are lots of primary and secondary level training courses coming soon.

If you would like to find out more information please contact Fiona Lightfoot on or visit:

Personal devices at heart of IT strategy “Throughout all our teaching and learning courses the focus

Students in Year 7 at Cambourne Village College are the first to work with personally-issued iPads.

At the heart of everything we do within The Cam Academy Trust is to ensure that every single pupil gets a truly excellent education, which is the starting point for seeking to develop a Trust IT Strategy.

The focus of the strategy is an intention to enable personal devices to be used by our pupils in ways that support the education process both inside and outside of school. There is also an ambition to enable all our staff to share educational resources effectively and easily with each other, regardless of the school in which they are based. Sean Sumner, Deputy Principal at Cambourne Village College, has now been seconded for two days a week to help to oversee the development and roll out of this strategy across our schools. Mr Sumner has strong experience of leading IT strategies in schools and of using IT to strengthen teaching and learning.


A programme is being developed that will see a series of pilots in each school before the potential introduction of the approach with one Year group at a time. We believe that embracing the full potential of the use of IT in the education process can help to improve the educational experience of our pupils. The first school is Cambourne Village College where 80 Year 7 pupils and 25 staff have been working through a pilot phase to confirm the possibilities of using personal devices effectively. Staff in other schools have also been experimenting with using devices to find out what is possible (as well as discovering potential pitfalls to be overcome).

Look out for future updates, which we will also share with families and pupils across our schools, about how and what we may be able to do to enable pupils to benefit from this approach.

Understanding the role of the Trustees


Gordon Johnson says the Trust means schools don’t have to spend time deliberating around conversations with Government and can concentrate on their strengths.

Chair of The Cam Academy Trust, Gordon Johnson, explains the role of our Trustees and the benefits of being part of a multi-academy trust.

Gordon begins: “As you know, schools within The Cam Academy Trust have their own identity and specialities – and this structure is vital to the reputation and standard of our Trust. School education is organised fundamentally by the school itself. However, in formal and legal terms, we need a body that has responsibility for essential matters such as ensuring public funding is being spent to the best of its ability for good educational purposes and to communicate directly with the Department for Education. This is where the Trustees come in.”

The Cam Academy Trust has 17 Trustees (4 Members and 13 Directors), all of whom bring unique expertise and knowledge. Gordon has extensive experience within education and was President of Wolfson College, Cambridge from 1993 - 2010 and a Deputy Vice Chancellor from 2002 - 2010. Gordon is a historian and currently the President of the Royal Asiatic Society. Gordon continues: “As Trustees, it is important for myself and colleagues to maintain good links with the Regional Schools Commissioner, Education Funding Authority and Department for Education. We hold discussions with Government and represent our Trust as a whole.

“We also have ultimate oversight of local responsibility and help to select local governing bodies — apart from the elected positions - whilst giving freedom to schools to concentrate on educating their pupils in the best way.

“Within this, we are keen to see and to ensure that all pupils in all of our schools benefit from the best that is available in any of our schools. This gives great purpose to being one wider organisation rather than our schools simply being individual entities. “This structure is so important to ensure that schools within our Trust can grow and concentrate on their strengths, without having to spend time deliberating around conversations with Government and allocating capital. “Pragmatically, one may ask why such a structure is needed. Well, firstly a great deal of public money is being spent by the Trust, so we need to ensure that we have accountability. Secondly, it allows all of our schools to be truly comprehensive and to be committed to the Trust’s

‘We operate differently from other multi-academy trusts in the sense that we balance formal structure with devolving responsibility within the schools to concentrate on their area of excellence. We are not stand-alone schools but actually make an impact by joining together’ — Gordon Johnson, Chair of Trustees

values that we all stand by.

“As an example of this, we are all part of a Trust that operates within certain parts of Cambridgeshire, yet our reach is far wider than that, which is especially demonstrated through our International Principle.”

“Schools within The Cam Academy Trust are grouped together geographically. This allows our Trust to operate in a very coherent manner and not on an industrial scale which is spread across the country. We’re able to talk to one another, share ideas and best practice.

“Cam schools are within easy reach of one another meaning we are able to share resources and think carefully about the best way to educate pupils. We’re into a new stage of our Trust also, where we are able to offer our local communities good education from nursery right until students are looking towards University, making their first career choice or next stage in their life.”

“Our commitment to the local communities in which we serve is also instrumental in the way that the Trustees operate. The ‘village college’ premise demonstrates that our schools are not solely about the children but in a wider sense, they are key and central to the townships in which they are based. “We operate differently from other multi-academy trusts in the sense that we balance formal structure with devolving responsibility within the schools to concentrate on their area of excellence. We are not stand-alone schools but actually make an impact by joining together. “Finally, being part of The Cam Academy Trust offers power in the form of our continued professional development and teacher education programme.

“Having colleagues that may be facing similar opportunities and challenges to yourself is a very valuable asset when you have the opportunity to share ideas and to collaborate. All of these points work together to build a committed culture, which in turn makes it an agreeable place to work and one that is able to retain and recruit great members of staff.

“It is, after all, The Cam Academy Trust’s people who make the whole operation work and without whom our offering and commitment to the local communities, wouldn’t be possible.”


New logo marks a new chapter . . .


School Focus: Gamlingay

Gamlingay First School, soon to be Gamlingay Village Primary, has proudly launched its new school logo! To mark the event each child was presented with a new bookmark featuring the logo on 1st March to coincide with World Book Day.

“It feels like a very personal step for the school - combining our history and new partnerships. The colours of the logo have been carefully chosen to include those of The Cam Academy Trust and the middle circular design symbolises the iconic round windows of our original school building.

Shelley Desborough, Headteacher at Gamlingay, said: “Our new logo was really well received by students, parents and colleagues alike.

“I do still have a wooden shield in my office from 1946 with the former logo on, so the new design is a very exciting and proud moment in the school’s history.”

The design was a true team collaboration, taken forward by a working group of governors and staff, and led by school governor, Chris Leete.

“Gamlingay is relocating to a new school building in 2019, so we wanted to signify new beginnings and make an investment to combine the history of the school within our new chapter.

Gamlingay students each received a bookmark with the new logo to mark World Book Day.

Facebook launch is Guidelines for an instant hit using social media School Focus: Hartford Infant School

Hartford Infant School launched its Facebook profile in January and received 112 likes within the first month. The page is gaining a lot of positive interaction with parents, through the sharing of photos of the classes, publicising events and reaching over 1,500 Facebook users.

Rae Lee, Headteacher at Hartford Infant School, commented: “I’ve been really pleased with the page. It is something completely different from what we’ve done before and for that reason, I was a little cautious when we first launched to see how it would be received by the local community. Our pupils and colleagues have been so helpful by sharing stories of the activities they are doing in classes and are always happy to smile for a photo!”


Social media is a great and modern way to communicate with all our communities. Platforms like Twitter and Facebook offer real-time information, conversation opportunities and the chance to share the achievements of our pupils and schools. This needs to be done in a responsible way, which is why a new social media policy is being developed for the Trust alongside guidelines and tips for all staff in all schools using the apps. This is to protect us all, so that everyone adheres to confidentiality and privacy rules – particularly important with the onset of GDPR in May. The new policy will be on the Trust website once ratified.

School pioneers apprenticeship scheme


Hartford Junior School students visiting a project near Addenbrooke’s Hospital in Cambridge.

School Focus: Hartford Junior School

Hartford Junior School has launched a new Apprenticeship Scheme which is proving to be a roaring success with pupils, teachers and parents alike.

The scheme, which began in September 2017, was created to increase the exposure that pupils have to people with rewarding, successful careers, with the aim of inspiring career aspirations. It is being led by Deputy Headteacher, Kate Ruddock, alongside teachers and teaching assistants, and through their hard work has gained support from local businesses, charities and parents. All the children within the school have been randomly assigned to one of 14 groups, covering professions within: medicine, science, history, ICT, engineering, justice and law, the military, travel, music and theatre, sport, animal care, media, horticulture and emergency services.

Each group has a different lead taken by teachers and teaching assistants, which gives pupils the opportunity to work with people who they may not otherwise have contact with.

forthcoming in offering their expertise.

“We’ve also done a lot of learning on ways to adapt the scheme. For example, we originally had university as one of the group’s focus, but in practice we found that the student role felt too similar to the school experience — so we split those children amongst the other groups, which has been really positive.”

The school has introduced an awards programme for the Apprenticeship Scheme. Pupils are now working towards their level one, two or three certificates — which encourages further thoughts on the environments they are being exposed to and will help them see how the learning can be explored further in their home life.

Hartford Junior School operates its Apprenticeship Scheme every third Wednesday afternoon. For more information, visit the apprenticeship section on the school website:

Steve Davis, Headteacher at Hartford Junior School, commented: “The whole school is really pulling together and making this scheme a success. It’s great to see the children’s ideas about the world of work expand and they really do hang on the experts’ every word. I’m the lead of the Engineering group of pupils. Myself and the children have enjoyed being out of the classroom, visiting local businesses and we’ve had external professionals come into school, which has been rewarding for the students to gain a perspective from a professional that isn’t also their teacher.”

The Hartford Junior Apprenticeship Scheme is following the principles of national charity, Achievement for All. The charity’s mission is to close the unacceptable gaps at every level of the education system by empowering young people, as well as their teachers, parents and carers. Kate Ruddock, Deputy Headteacher, said: “The children are enjoying meeting professionals who have worked hard to be in a role that they are proud of and being exposed to roles that some pupils weren't aware of. Parents are very supportive of the scheme, and we’ve had lots of people offering their place of work for a group trip or volunteering to talk to a class. Local businesses have also been very

A professional make-up artist discussed her career before giving students practical experience.


China becomes a key focus as Trust finds ne


Frank Fan is Melbourn’s first specialist Mandarin teacher.

Mandarin is now established as one of the key foreign languages taught to pupils at Melbourn Village College as part of their Foreign Languages’ curriculum, alongside Spanish. This approach is strongly in keeping with The Cam Academy Trust’s stated international principle and means that many pupils and staff will have the opportunity to learn more about the remarkable and highly significant country of China.

Rachel Hawkes, Director of International Education, commented: “The aim to provide education with an international outlook in all of The Cam Academy Trust schools drives our commitment to forging and maintaining international partnerships at all levels. The new link with a school in Beijing, together with the Mandarin curriculum that Melbourn is driving forward, represent a unique Trust offering for our students.

“Our recent visit to China had a dual purpose for the Trust – we established a link with a secondary school in the Haidian district of Beijing, which will enable students from the trust to take part in a two-way exchange from spring 2019, and we developed a conversation with the Haidian in-service teaching training college, which, we hope, will facilitate the exchange of teaching practice between teachers in both countries and contribute to teachers’ continuing professional development. “Learning more about teacher training in China was very interesting. In some respects, it is quite different, in that teachers in China do not undertake a formal qualification before starting the profession like we do in the UK.

The Cam Academy Trust delegation in talks with their Chinese counterparts.

China is not the only country to take a more systematic approach to in-service training. During the Easter break, I spent a week in Austria delivering a three-day residential CPD for teachers of English, which is their minimum annual entitlement.

“Within The Cam Academy Trust, we put a lot of emphasis on language learning, and not simply to gain an advantage in the job market. There are so many different people in the world and I believe it can only enrich one’s life to know and understand other cultures. “I’ve been immensely proud of the eagerness at school and pupil level at Melbourn Village College to learn Mandarin. We are currently considering how we can expand the trust Mandarin

‘There are so many different people in the world and I believe it can only enrich one’s life to know and understand other cultures’ — Rachel Hawkes, Trust Director of International Education

offering at KS5, at Comberton Village College, so that students have a logical next step from GCSE.

“There are multiple schools within our trust developing their global citizenship through partnerships with international schools. I’m looking forward to seeing what the future will bring from our new link with China.”

Mandarin specialist is awarded OBE “Instead training and professional development are automatically built into their working life and included within their directed time.

Katharine Carruthers, governor at Melbourn Village College received an OBE in the 2018 New Year’s Honours for her services to education and, in particular, the work she leads on teaching Chinese.

Katherine commented: “I am thrilled with the award — it is an official recognition of the work to develop Chinese teaching in schools in which my team and I have been involved over a number of years.” Mrs Carruthers is the Director of University College London’s Confucius Institute of Education and a driving force behind the teaching of Chinese in schools in England.

Katherine continued: “As a governor at MVC, I have been delighted to be able to help the school with the introduction of Mandarin. I am proud that the school's first teacher of Chinese, Frank Fan, was


one of my PGCE Mandarin students at the UCL Institute of Education, before taking up his role at MVC. 

“Over the past 18 months, I have come in to see Mr Fan teach at MVC every term and have been very impressed by the progress and motivation of the students and his high expectations as the teacher. It is encouraging to see the school joining the Mandarin Excellence Programme with the first cohort of Year 7 students receiving four taught hours of Chinese per week and four hours of self-study”. Mrs Carruthers, who previously taught Chinese in the Cambridge area, has written books on the subject and made the case for the increasing need for English people to be able to speak the language as China’s world influence grows.

w ways to deliver International Principle


January saw Trust CEO Stephen Munday accompanied by colleagues Rachel Hawkes and Peter Law head off on a sixday educational trip of China. Here Stephen shares his reflections on the trip which it is hoped will contribute to greater collaborations between the education sectors in the two countries.

“In January, I was fortunate to visit Beijing with Rachel Hawkes, our Director of International Education, and Peter Law, the Head of School at Comberton Village College. The main purpose of the trip was to establish a future exchange programme for pupils from some of our secondary schools with pupils from a named school in Beijing. The hope is that this can become an ongoing annual exchange for years to come and can enrich greatly the educational experience of many of our pupils (as well as, we hope, the experience of pupils from Beijing). The whole project, including this initial visit, is supported by funding from the Beijing Education Authority.

“In addition to seeking to establish a school-based exchange programme, we were also able to engage with teacher training institutions in Beijing. It was interesting to compare notes and approaches between our countries. We attended (and contributed to) a conference being held for over 1,000 teachers from various parts of China (as part of their required 360 hours of professional development that they must participate in every five years in their careers). The key theme of this conference, and much of the professional development for teachers in Beijing (and perhaps China more generally), was the need to introduce creativity into the teaching and learning process in schools. “There was a recognition that Chinese pupils are very effective at certain styles of learning and memorising but not so good at thinking creatively. The same might be seen as true of styles of teaching. There was a recognition that while this led to considerable success in certain ways of measuring educational

‘We want everyone to benefit in meaningful ways from our commitment to international education in its variety of forms’ — Stephen Munday, Trust CEO

outcomes, it was a considerable concern in other measures (such as producing Nobel Prize winners). It followed from this that there was strong interest in learning how to develop creativity in the education process and that there was a strong interest in how this is done effectively in British schools.

“In this, there is some irony. There has been much recent interest from our education system in learning from Chinese schools about how to perform better in certain educational outcomes (such as in international measurements of maths tests). Teachers visit Chinese schools (in Shanghai) in order to learn the techniques and then apply them in our schools. This is a fundamental part of the Maths Hub that we lead in Cambridgeshire and Peterborough. It has led to some positive developments in maths teaching, we believe, back in this country. In the meantime, we are now being asked to help Chinese teachers to change their teaching approach and become more creative. “We will continue to pursue these links with China because of their strong educational importance. With the potential links with teacher training that may be established, we hope that there could be some exciting possibilities for some of our staff. There could be further possibilities of links that we will look to pursue that could offer enriching opportunities for staff and pupils alike: we want everyone to benefit in meaningful ways from our commitment to international education in its variety of forms.” Trust staff were given a guided tour of the Beijing school where a partnership is being established.

Stephen Munday addresses a conference of more than 1,000 teachers in Beijing.

China’s culture can greatly enrich student experiences on any future exchange.

A cold day at the Great Wall of China but an unmissable part of the visit.


St Peter’s is rising to its challenges


School Focus: St Peter’s School, Huntingdon

In each edition of TrustEd we will focus on a particular school to share its background, challenges and ambitions. This time it’s the turn of St Peter’s, which, in recognition of the rapid improvements there, was recently chosen by Chief Inspector of Schools Amanda Spielman to launch her first Ofsted annual report.

St Peter’s is a secondary school with approximately 1,000 students from Year 7 to 13. Geographically situated between the Oxmoor housing estate and a large industrial area, the school joined The Cam Academy Trust in September 2016 and is considered to be one of the most improved schools in the country based on its performance during the last academic year.

The secondary school and sixth form moved out of ‘Special Measures’ straight to ‘Good’ in March 2017, the year it recorded its highest ever GCSE results with 66 per cent of students achieving the new Grade 4 or above in both English and Maths – 11 percentage points higher than the previous year and above the national average. Head Teacher Christopher Bennet reflects on the journey so far: “At St Peter’s School we pride ourselves on our pastoral care supporting students both now, and when they leave our school, to become successful adults who make a positive contribution to their community. “We have a variety of pathways through our curriculum, which allows us to tailor our provision to the needs of individual students.

“This is, in part, in recognition of the external influences that our students experience. Over a third of our students are disadvantaged, of whom two thirds have a Child Protection

file and we have three members of staff specifically employed as safeguarding professionals.

“This is partly a reflection of our catchment area, PE29, which is recognised by the Local Authority as being the most challenging in the county and makes us a category 6 school. “Nevertheless, our Progress 8 figure in 2017 was positive with disadvantaged students in both English and Maths achieving positive Progress 8 outcomes.

“In terms of our GCSE results, despite our 2017 Year 11 cohort having Key Stage 2 results that were below the national average, we were proud that our combined English and Maths outcomes were above the national average.”

‘The headteacher and his team have been unrelenting in improving the quality of provision within the school’ — Amanda Spielman, Ofsted’s Chief Inspector, during her visit to St Peter’s

CEO: Visits have been great experience In March, Stephen Munday visited each of the Trust’s Primary phase Schools.

Of his visits, Stephen said:“The Cam Academy Trust now has a real core of Primary Schools. Our ambition has always been to truly cross-phase and that is now a reality. With further Primary Schools lining up to join the Trust, we are continuing to develop a strong and vibrant Primary community.

“The visits have been a great experience, especially to see the strength of engagement of the pupils in their learning throughout all classes in all of the schools.

Stephen Munday meets students at Jeavons Wood Primary School.

“All of this is great testimony to the excellent work of all staff in these schools and these positive things only happen due to the fine efforts of the staff teams in each of the schools – a big thanks to everybody for this hard work. “I also spoke with the Heads of each of the schools and we reflected on how things can develop to provide further benefit to each school as being part of a group of schools within our Trust — rather than acting as individual entities. “One thing in the coming year that we would all like to see is progress towards more meaningful cross-phase work, where that is appropriate. This could have clear potential educational benefit to pupils in our schools and it will be good to seek some positive development to achieving this in the coming year.”


School is growing up in every sense


School Focus: Cambourne Village College

Students arrive for the first day of lessons at Cambourne Village College in September 2013.

Having now been open for five years, the first cohort of Cambourne Village College students is nearing the end of their secondary school education. The school first opened in 2013 with 132 Year 7 students and a small team of teachers, the majority of whom were full-time employees of nearby Comberton Village College. Since then, the college has grown each year with student cohorts and staff members — which now make a full permanent team!

Claire Coates, Principal at Cambourne Village College, said: “As our first cohort, the current Year 11 will always be very special to us. They have been the first in every sense — in learning in our brand-new facilities, in enjoying the range of trips and activities on offer, being the first sports teams, band members and musical theatre-performers, DofE participants…they have had a unique educational experience at CamVC and although sad in some ways, it’s very exciting to see them making their Post-16 choices and preparing to set off for further education or work opportunities.” There are also several significant developments taking place at Cambourne Village College as it continues to expand to meet the growing demand for school places in Cambridgeshire.

Claire continued: “We are working with the LA on plans to

build a second campus for Cambourne Village College, which is expected to open in September 2023. The design of the 900-pupil building is being considered and its location in relation to our current buildings. “We are now looking closely at the best model of running a much enlarged, but integrated school, across two campuses.

“In the meantime, even more accommodation is urgently needed to house the large intakes we are expecting more immediately, so we are also planning to build a further wing of the school, on the area beyond the Performance Hall, to open in September 2019. The building for this will start this summer. “We have ambitions to open a Sixth Form on site too, and this new wing is being designed for future conversion for Post-16 studies. This plan is still in the negotiating phase with the authorities; we hope it will be approved to open in 2024.” With a year of milestones taking place for Cambourne Village College, it is an exciting time to be part of the school. While many plans will take place in the future, for now the school is busy focusing on giving the Year 11 pupils the very best preparation for its first set of GCSE exams this summer.


first cohort are now Year 11.


For the love of books and reading


The Cambourne library was enlarged and enhanced in the second phase of building work completed last summer.

Alison Tarrant was responsible for establishing Cambourne Village College’s popular library from scratch.

People Focus: Alison Tarrant

Big congratulations to Cambourne Village College Librarian Alison Tarrant as she heads to pastures new for the role of Director of The School Library Association. Alison started with the Trust in 2011 and managed the creation of the Cambourne Village College library everything from finalising the furniture to manually inputting each of its books into the library system. Alison, who initially worked at Comberton Village College, commented: “Being at Cambourne right from the start has been a unique experience. Alongside the librarian role, I have taken on positions of form tutor and gifted and talented coordinator, as well as stepping in as a teaching assistant and receptionist. “When stocking the library, there are so many considerations, like if a book is aimed at unconfident readers thick paper is important, otherwise seeing the words through the page may put the reader off!”

Cambourne Village College has more than 9,000 books in the ‘borrowable’ collection, not including e-books and reference books and had more than 1,700 books out on loan in January alone. Alison continued: “Libraries in the UK are visited by more than a third of the adult population, a love shared by Cambourne pupils and its team of 66 student library helpers.

“Opening the library, I would be greeted by a queue of eager students, waiting to go inside. I enjoyed working with the students, planning lessons and finding books that create intrigue, and introducing new ideas and different perspectives. “I never saw my role as passive or clerical, but actively working with students and teachers - guiding them through the world of literature and information.

“Children can get overwhelmed sometimes and believe that to be great they have to change the world, when in fact you


don’t need to change the whole world, just find part of the world to make better. “Reading can open so many doors and can be more important for educational success than socio-economic status according to the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD).”

Alison has taken a keen interest in additional activities including being a Carnegie and Kate Greenaway Judge, Chair of the Eastern Youth Libraries Group and delivering various training.

Of Alison’s time with CamVC, Trust CEO Stephen Munday said: “Alison has been an absolute asset to Cambourne Village College, bringing the joy of reading and world of books alive for so many students. We are very sad to see her go but she leaves a fantastic legacy which we will do our very best to continue. I wish her all the best in her new role.”

Alison finished: “I’m very lucky to have worked for a school that understands the importance of CPD and being professionally active. “I would encourage all my former colleagues to follow their passions and take up the opportunities that are on offer from The Cam Academy Trust. “In my new role, I will focus on promoting school libraries nationally and showing teachers how to use them effectively.

“We live in such an exciting time for children’s literature, yet we also live in a time where libraries are fighting a stereotype. People believe that they are unused, that children - and adults — prefer to access all information online. Actually, that’s not true — as Cambourne Village College proves!” Favourite books: Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen and Skellig by David Almond.

Food for thought as pair top 2.5m meals


People Focus: Debbie Rogers & Lynn Gregory

Debbie Rogers, Catering Manager at Comberton Village College, and Lynn Gregory, Head of Catering at Melbourn Village College, are celebrating a combined 45 years of catering at the Trust!

Together the ladies estimate serving around 2.5 million main meals to students. Debbie commented: “I’ve been with the school since 1991 and in that time I’ve seen the menus become more and more flexible — and I really enjoy that there are lots of opportunities to introduce new ideas and foods. For example, our pupils are keen on ingredients like quinoa at the moment and lots of different spices. “I’m a big fan of cookery programmes and enjoy eating out, looking for inspiring recipes to recreate for the school. “For me, it’s definitely the people that make the work here so rewarding. I enjoy getting to know colleagues and the children — and I think they appreciate that all our cooking is done from scratch.

“I travel in every day from March with my sister-in-law, who is also called Debbie — which is quite a commitment when it’s snowing. But come rain or shine we’re always here at the gates, ready to refuel all the visitors to the canteen!”

Debbie Rogers is now in her 27th year as catering manager at Comberton Village College.

Lynn said: “I love being part of Melbourn Village College and watching our pupils grow with confidence — being here really does feel like being part of a family.

“I think it's so important to make the time to talk to the students and get to know them, making the canteen a place to refuel through food but also a space to reflect during the school day. My daughter also attended Melbourn — and she has blossomed into such an ambitious young woman. “I really enjoy working with our local community and our students have a positive reputation for supporting various events.

“I have organised fundraisers, volunteered for local groups and the students are always eager to take part. In the summer holidays I volunteer and cook for the elderly and the children give up their time to help with serving the meals, setting up and clearing. “Events like these allow the children to develop new skills and also open opportunities for different generations to meet and get to know one another.” Congratulations Debbie and Lynn!

Lynn Gregory has been the Melbourn Village College catering manager for 18 years.


First report on Gender Pay Gap is out


As TrustEd went to press, the Trust was preparing to publish its Gender Pay Gap Report.

This is now an annual statutory requirement for all public sector employers with more than 250 employees to be available on websites by 4th April 2018.

This is the first time The Cam Academy Trust has produced such a report. Please view the findings, plus actions that are being taken on the Gender Pay gap, on the Trust website,

Five principles that Countdown to new guide all we do GDPR rules is on At the heart of our work lies the five core principles of The Cam Academy Trust. These drive everything that we do and are:

n The excellence principle — Education must be of the very highest standard.

n The comprehensive principle — Education must be for all kinds and abilities.

n The community principle — Every Academy must be at the heart of its local community and serve it well.

The upgraded legislation for data protection laws, known as GDPR (General Data Protection Regulations) comes into effect on 25th May 2018.

Carolyn Ducket has been assigned the role of Trust Data Protection Officer and will be working closely with all schools within The Cam Academy Trust to ensure that they comply with the legislation.

If you have any specific questions regarding your data, please contact Carolyn directly.

n The partnership principle — Each Academy must seek to work positively in partnership with others for mutual benefit.

n The international principle — The curriculum inside and outside the classroom must have a clear international dimension.

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Key Dates

Cover Supervisor Programme — Monday 18th June @ Comberton VC. Cover Supervisor Programme — Wednesday 27th June @ Comberton VC A-level results day — Thursday 16th August GCSE results day — Thursday 23rd August

Get in Touch

Get involved with TrustEd. Please help us make this a magazine for staff by staff. We will continue to focus on the people and the schools involved as well as specific subjects. If you have ideas for articles for inclusion in future editions, please contact either Trust Publicity and Communications Manager Judy Czylok on or Lizzie Marlow at our marketing partners, Athene Communications, on



l Mental Health Awareness Week — 14-20th May l International Youth Day — 12th August l World Teachers Day — 5th October

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Useful Contacts

iPad project — Cover Supervisor Programme — Anne Marquess on CTSN Teaching and Learning Programmes and Courses — Fiona Lightfoot on Gender Pay Gap Report — Maxine Parker on GDPR — Carolyn Ducket on

TrustEd Issue 1, Spring 2018  
TrustEd Issue 1, Spring 2018