Bradford Girls Grammar becomes 19th school to join BDAT

BRADFORD Girls’ Grammar School (BGGS) will join Bradford Diocesan Academies Trust (BDAT) following an agreement by the Department for Education to a merger between the two Bradford education Trusts.

Bradford Girls Grammar School, on Squire Lane, becomes the 19th Academy to join the BDAT family of schools, in a voluntary transfer, proposed to take place early in 2023. The school will join the existing group of four secondary academies and 14 primary academies.

The merger proposal is a result of nearly 12 months of conversations between the two parties.

Both parties have road tested the relationship since the early parts of 2022 and are confident the merger will set BGGS, a standalone Academy Trust, in good stead for the future.

Following DfE approval in late July, the school will now embark on conversations with parents and staff to explain the process in the autumn term.

Chair of Governors at BGGS, Alison Cooper, said: “Governors spent a number of months exploring the options for joining a Trust, taking external advice and talking with potential partners.

“We firmly believe the move to join a larger Trust, which shares our values, our ethos and our ambitions for our children is the right next step for the future of the school.”

Carol Dewhurst, OBE, Chief Executive Officer of BDAT, said: “We are pleased to welcome Bradford Girls’ Grammar School staff, students, parents and community into the BDAT family.

BDAT is a Trust which proudly works with a number of diverse and special schools across the city, each unique in its own identity and dedicated to the community it serves, but which benefits from being part of a collaborative schools family committed to making each other stronger.”

Clare Martin, Principal of BGGS, said: “Having traversed the challenges of a national pandemic, started on our Ofsted improvement journey and celebrated a great set of GCSE results for 2022, now seems the perfect time to consider joining a strong, local group of schools.

“I am confident this proposed merger will ensure the school continues to flourish.”

In addition to the support of the Department for Education, the merger is supported by local leaders and councillors.

Cllr Imran Khan, Deputy Leader for Bradford City Council, said: “I have witnessed how BDAT supports and develops schools while retaining their unique character, so I look forward to seeing them working together with the whole school community so that both parties will be strengthened by this match.”

Naz Shah, MP for Bradford North, said: “It’s great to hear students, parents, staff and the community will continue to be a priority for BDAT and Bradford Girls’ Grammar School, and I’m excited to see the school flourish. ”

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