Wimborne Academy Trust is partnering with the Church of England education charity Teach First and the Chartered College of Teaching in a new Rural Teaching Partnership. The partnership, which will run in ten pilot dioceses across England, will see trainee teachers, trained by Teach First, start two-year placements with Church of England primary schools in September 2021.
Wimborne Academy Trust comes under the diocese of Salisbury. The other nine pilot dioceses are Leeds, York, Truro, Chelmsford, Norwich, Oxford, Hereford, Derby, and Bath-and-Wells.
By coming together, these three organisations hope to tackle teacher recruitment challenges currently faced by schools in poorer rural areas, with evidence showing that rural school leaders face greater difficulties with staff recruitment and retention compared to urban schools.
With more than half of its 4,644 schools situated in rural areas, the Church of England is the majority provider of rural schools nationally. Within the ten pilot regions, schools serving areas of rural deprivation will be selected for placements either in Church of England schools, or Non-Church of England Schools which are part of a Church of England federation or multi academy trust.
All trainee teachers in the partnership will be enrolled on Teach First’s Training Programme, which has recruited, trained and placed over 15,000 trainee teachers in schools serving disadvantaged communities to date.
Ron Jenkinson, headteacher of St Michael’s Middle School in Colehill, which is part of Wimborne Academy Trust, said, “Teach First has a proven track record of attracting the brightest and the best so linking this with communities which have their own unique challenges can only strengthen the opportunities we provide our young people.
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