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Our Story

Why a Multi Academy Trust?

About Us

Waveney Valley Academies Trust was formed in 2017 having evolved from the success of Sir John Leman High School, a high performing Single Academy Trust with an exceptional reputation for attainment, progress and school improvement.

Sir John Leman High School achieved the following successes in recent years:

  • formally recognised by the DfE as being in the top 3% most-improved schools nationally for GCSE results for two consecutive years, oversubscribed in every year group, despite a huge over-supply of secondary school places in the local area
  • one of the lowest rate of fixed-term exclusions in the country
  • successfully incorporated two additional year groups into the school
  • achieved the highest-possible LA RAG rating
  • consistently achieved some of the highest GCSE results in the county, despite our students joining us with lower prior-attainment, and from lower socio-economic backgrounds
  • shortlisted for the TES Secondary School of the year Award 2016
  • the Sir John Leman High School Senior Leadership Team led Sewell Park Academy to being the third most-improved school in Norfolk in 2015
  • the Sir John Leman High School Senior Leadership Team led Alde Valley Academy to being the most-improved school in East Anglia in 2016

As a Multi Academy Trust, we will build a partnership of ambitious schools where children and young people, their families and our colleagues will be valued, challenged and believed in.

We aim to deliver the very best education, nurturing learning environments where a culture of excellence and aspiration will enable and empower students to achieve to the highest levels regardless of their social or economic background.

We have a proven track record for rapid and sustained school improvement, achieved through delivering effective leadership, embedding tried and tested systems and ensuring an innovative, strategic approach to change.

We will commit to sustainable growth, ensuring that schools of all sizes play a full and active part in our Trust and remain at the heart of the local communities they serve.

Our Story

Waveney Valley Academies Trust was formed in 2017 with staff from Sir John Leman High School – Jeremy Rowe and Ali O’Connor. The Trust team quickly increased to 4, with the addition of a Business Support Manager and a Business Support Officer to accommodate the workload.

In March 2018, Roman Hill Primary became the first school to officially join Waveney Valley Academies Trust, as well as the first Primary School.

In April 2018, the Trust team (Jeremy Rowe, Ali O’Connor, Dynah Baller and Amber Johnson) moved into the Bungay office. Soon after this, the Director of Business and Finance from SJLHS provided finance services for the Trust.

In September 2018, following a lengthy academisation process, Stowmarket High School joined WVAT and in December 2018, it was decided that Alde Valley Academy would be joining WVAT following the rebrokerage of Bright Tribe schools. In the meantime, Jeremy continued to work with other schools, potentially forming further working partnerships.

At this point, a staffing restructure was approved by the Trust Board to increase the staff capacity within the central trust team, and we welcomed Julia, Charlotte and Sonia to the central trust team.

Between March 2018 and March 2019, the Trust has grown from one school to four, including three high schools, and with two further primary schools already within the conversion process.