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Spring Newsletter 2022

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There have been a few changes in and around the Trust this week.

We are in the really fortunate position of having a wealth of excellent “up and coming” leaders in and around our schools and organisations. As such, keeping them supporting with our children and ensuring that we place them in the right positions, with the right young staff, is absolutely essential.

The start of this “domino” was Daniel Wood. Dan has worked within the Trust, on and off, for the last 15 years. He started in our Creative Arts department, moved into PR and Marketing, led on our supported work placements and most recently took on board the head of site at Medtia role. Dan has always had a real eye for being “entrepreneurial” and finding unique opportunities. As such, he has been successful in taking up the role of Assistant CEO with a key responsibility for new developments and marketing. He is still going to lead our work in relation to careers and apprenticeships.

We also strengthen our executive team with the appointment of Phil Arnold. Phil is working alongside our heads at Spring Brook and the Springboard Project. Phil brings with him a wealth of experience from working within the social justice sector. He will help guide us in our strategy with young people who may need alternative offers. Phil also has lots of experience of setting up social enterprises. Phil and Daniel working alongside each other will be a formidable force. I, for one, can’t wait to see where it takes us in the next few months.

I remember when I was in America last year, I saw a quote from Steve Jobs who basically said all he did as CEO of Apple was surround himself with people who were more knowledgeable and better informed that he was. I’m in that really fortunate position with our central teams and leaders in schools. They are all our experts.

Jaina Walton will take on Dan’s role at Medtia with our Pathway learners and our youngsters moving into our community. Jaina doesn’t need a lot of introduction. She has taken Hollinwood through its first few years. She has overseen the growth from 50 children in its first year to well over 200 today. Last year Jaina also was the head when the school received an “outstanding” accolade from Ofsted. Jaina was keen to extend her skill set with a different group of learners. Again, I am certain that Jaina will strategically offer a fresh view and different perspective that builds upon our successes and drives our ambitions even higher.

On Friday the Governors and Trustees held interviews for the head at Hollinwood Academy and I’m delighted to be able to inform you that Laura Millard was successful. Many of you will be aware that Laura was Jaina’s deputy. She has been with the Trust for around 5 years and in that time has shown herself to be one of our shining stars. She’s hard working, knowledgeable, diligent and has a real passion for continuous improvement. Just our sort of leader.

As well as all that moving around, we’ve also had a really productive week “tweaking” our dashboard. After writing last week’s blog I reflected that our destination outcomes weren’t fit for purpose. Don’t get me wrong, they are great for our older learners in our schools but they have little relevance for our 5, 6 and 7 year olds. So, I asked a couple of key colleagues, Rachel from Hawthorns and Jenny from the central team, to reflect on the destination outcomes and make them relevant to all our children. Hopefully we can consult on their work in the next couple of weeks.

So that’s another week over. Have a great weekend,


You can find all Graham’s previous blog entries here


New Bridge Multi Academy Trust
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