Forest Gate and Cumberland schools could work together in trust partnership

Cumberland School headteacher Gillian Dineen

Cumberland School headteacher Gillian Dineen - Credit: Tom Barnes

Two secondary schools could work together to improve educational standards if plans for a trust partnership go ahead.

Forest Gate Community School headteacher Simon Elliott

Forest Gate Community School headteacher Simon Elliott - Credit: Archant

Cumberland School’s headteacher Gillian Dineen has confirmed discussions are being held about joining the Community Schools Trust, which runs Forest Gate Community School.

She said: “This is a very exciting time for Cumberland School. We have just had our best ever year for GCSE results at the school and are on track for further success this year.

“Working in partnership with a fellow high performing school will help to drive up standards and speed up our journey towards becoming outstanding.”

Forest Gate was rated outstanding by Ofsted at its last inspection and last year’s GCSE results put it among the best in the country.

“The Community Schools Trust shares with Cumberland the values of community, inclusivity, aspiration and ambition for students, as well as a strong commitment to academic excellence,” the Oban Close, Plaistow school’s headteacher continued.

“As a school, you must be constantly looking at ways to improve. Yes, we have been successful recently but that is because we are relentless in our desire to constantly get better.

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“These are values we share with the staff, parents and children at Forest Gate Community.”

“This partnership ensures the school will retain its unique identity, including name and uniform, as well as the excellent teaching and support staff responsible for our recent success. At the same time it will offer wide ranging opportunities for effective collaboration which will benefit staff and pupils and therefore our commnity.

“We will continue to take soundings on this decision from all school stakeholders to ensure we make an informed choice that will benefit all students, parents and staff at the school.”

Simon Elliott, headteacher at the Forest Lane, Forest Gate school, added: “We would be very pleased to welcome Cumberland School into the Community Schools Trust.

“Working in partnership with an inclusive, well-run and aspirational local school affords the opportunity for improvement on both sides.”

Should the plans go ahead, Cumberland and Forest Gate would follow in the footsteps of Rokeby, Sarah Bonnell and Lister Community schools, which have united in a separate trust known as the Newham Community Schools Trust.