No teaching redundancies at Ipswich Academy but some staff still to go as big cuts made

Ipswich Academy.

Ipswich Academy. - Credit: Gregg Brown

Proposals to make teachers redundant at Ipswich Academy, which is making cuts to meet staff pay and pension costs, have been stopped.

Two teachers and four non-teaching staff could have lost their jobs at the former Holywells High School which last month was said to be making “significant” savings.

Steve Bolingbroke, chief executive of Learning Schools Trust, which runs the school, said redundancies were not needed as cuts elsewhere had been made. No exact figures are yet available but a number of staff are to retire, move to new schools or have not had their contracts renewed.

Mr Bolingbroke said there was a “normal turnover” at the academy which was “no different” to other schools.

“I am happy and very pleased to be able to achieve it without any redundancies, we are appointing new staff as well at a time of year when some teachers move on,” he said.

“This has all been done in cooperation with Paradigm Trust.”

Learning Schools Trust is due to hand over the school, which was converted from county council control into an academy in 2011, to new sponsor Paradigm in September.

Mr Bolingbroke said a “sustainable” budget could now be set for the school.

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He added: “We are very happy with the recruitment we have done over the last couple of months. There will be high quality people joining the academy from September, in a positive process.”

On addressing concerns there could be lower class sizes from September, he said: “We kept smaller classes sizes for a while; they are now going back to more normal levels.

“If you look at research there is no proof classroom sizes make a big difference in education apart from for some primary-aged pupils.”

Other savings are being made through streamlining as well as falling energy prices.

The Department for Education wants Paradigm to take over after the academy was placed into special measures by Ofsted in a damning inspection report published in February.

Last month a mini follow-up report praised the school’s direction as changes are made.

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