6th Form Press Release


Cumbria Education Trust (CET), who were named by the Department for Education (DfE) as the preferred sponsor for The Whitehaven Academy, have offered a creative approach as to how students can access Level 3 / A-Level qualifications from September.

Although a decision has not yet been announced by the DfE about the future sponsor for The Whitehaven Academy, CET has committed to supporting students with their studies. The proposal has been worked on by the school, CET and other key partners.

The students will remain part of The Whitehaven Academy but will be offered access to a wide range of Level 3 qualifications at CET’s Workington Academy. Their primary base will be The Whitehaven Academy, the time they spend at Workington Academy will be determined by the number of courses they choose to study. The costs will be met by BTT until the new sponsor is in place.

Workington Academy’s Sixth Form was recently judged to be ‘Good’ by Ofsted and where the Key Stage 4 and Key Stage 5 results are rapidly improving.

Headteacher of The Whitehaven Academy, Warren Turner, is very supportive of the proposal. He said:

“Unfortunately, at present, sixth form provision at The Whitehaven Academy is simply not viable due to low numbers, and as such I would be unable to provide the broad and balanced curriculum I would want for my students. No Level 3 qualifications were offered at The Whitehaven Academy this year. This is an interim offer for our students, with a view that once the school regains its momentum, our sixth form provision will be reinstated on site.”

“I am very supportive of this proposal because the standard of facilities at Workington Academy are first rate and most importantly, the sixth form was recently awarded a ‘Good’ judgment by Ofsted. The range of courses on offer for my students is excellent. It is an exciting opportunity and one which I hope will be well received by students and parents.”

“CET are fully committed to this proposal whether they are our future sponsor or not. CET’s motto is ‘to be the best you can be’ – this proposal outlines their commitment to education in West Cumbria but also most importantly to my students.”

Operational arrangements are now well under way. Students from The Whitehaven Academy have been invited to two induction sessions on Monday, 2 and Tuesday, 3 July. This is a chance for students to look around the school and gain information about the broad range of courses on offer as well as having the opportunity to experience school life in the academy. For parents, a separate evening event has been arranged on Wednesday, 4 July.

George Beveridge, chair of the Academy Management Committee, (AMC), is also in favour of the proposal. He added:

“This is an excellent alternative plan and the best solution for delivering the high quality sixth form education our students deserve.”

“CET has taken note of the comments that students made in the recent student feedback sessions and has come up with a creative solution. I would like to thank them on behalf of the AMC for their support with this.”

Des Bird, Headteacher at Workington Academy, added:

“It will give us great pleasure to welcome students from The Whitehaven Academy to study within our successful sixth form. We have a brand new building with excellent facilities, and can provide a wide range of courses. I am very proud that we can help a local academy to continue to offer sixth form provision. I know that our school community will make students from The Whitehaven Academy very welcome, and that both Workington Academy and The Whitehaven Academy students can benefit from this innovative and exciting development.”