20 July 2017

Ringing in the changes and celebrating term’s end

By Richard Gill, CEO, ATLP

It’s official. School’s (nearly) out for Summer!

This week, as the ATLP celebrates its fifth birthday, four thousand ATLP students will be finely attuned to the sound of summer, as the final bell of the year rings out across our schools to herald the start of that great freedom of childhood – the school holidays.

And what a well-deserved break it will be.

Far from winding down for summer, our schools have been hives of activity during this final half term.  Exams and tests may be well and truly behind our students, but every June and July our students and staff go the extra mile in terms of sporting and extra-curricular activities.

We’ve enjoyed show-stopping productions, multi school cluster days, a drone day, day trips, proms, school visits abroad and a whole host of events which showcase the commitment and talents of our fantastic students and staff.


The highlight of the term, however, has to be our first ever ATLP Student Awards ceremony, which took place at Sutton Coldfield’s resplendent New Hall Hotel at the end of last month. ATLP headteachers and staff were proud and delighted to welcome 55 fantastic students from all of our schools, along with their families, to a celebratory afternoon of awards and tea and cakes.

What a privilege to see our students step up to receive accolades for their exceptional contribution to school and community life. These amazing young people did us proud and came together to represent what this partnership is about – supporting each other and those around us.

We were truly humbled by these courageous, creative and generous students and all that they do inside and outside of our schools. Thank you to all of our young people and everybody who was involved in ensuring this momentous occasion was a huge success – roll on next year!

I’m delighted to say that Neil Warner and Anna Balson will remain by my side next year in adding additional capacity leading on our MAT Improvement agenda. Alongside their current headteacher and national leader of education (NLE) positions, both Neil and Anna will be taking on additional duties as executive headteachers for secondary and primary schools, respectively.

It’s wonderful to enter into summer on such a positive note. We know that the coming weeks will provide our families with the chance to spend quality time together and to enjoy a harmonious and restful break.

Finally, a thank you to you all – those who I see regularly and those others who I’d like to see more of next year. My first year as Chief Executive has been challenging yet rewarding and I am privileged and humbled to have been afforded the opportunity to lead such a fantastic organisation working alongside brilliant, talented and committed colleagues. I look forward to welcoming you and seeing you all together, for the very first time since the Partnership was established, when we meet for our first ‘ATLP Excellence in Learning Conference’ on January 8th 2018 at the Motorcycle Museum.

Good luck to all our wonderful students and staff. Remember, that wherever this summer takes you, enjoy the journey and, hopefully, enjoy the rest.