The Exeter Diocesan Board of Education Committee (EDBE) recommends all schools should be working in a strong formal partnership or have a clear direction of travel to join such a partnership.  Formal partnerships are defined as being part of an academy trust or a federation.

Currently (October 2023), 82% of our Church of England schools are in a formal partnership – either a federation or academy trust.  Of those in formal partnerships, 71% are in an academy trust and 29% in a federation.

To find out more about the EDBE’s position about partnerships, to understand the difference between federations and academy trusts, and to start to think about how you might start your explorations, please read our Multi-school Grouping Policy and Guidance for Schools (October 2023).

When exploring potential partnership work, it is vital that leaders, including those involved in governance, liaise early with the Diocesan Education Team.  Not all academy trusts or federations are the same and robust due diligence is vital when investigating partnerships.  Entering a time-limited Management Partnership may allow your organisations to work in close collaboration before making a final decision.  The Diocese and Local Authority (if a maintained school) will support you in drafting a suitably structured and focussed Management Partnership.

Click here to read the Academisation Policy and Strategy.