Woodside primary school becomes the first in district to break from Council without a sponsor

Former Woodside pupil Stephen Clough with grandsons Bradley, Stephen and Tyler, who are current pupils

Former Woodside pupil Stephen Clough with grandsons Bradley, Stephen and Tyler, who are current pupils

First published in News Bradford Telegraph and Argus: Photograph of the Author by , City Hall Reporter

A primary school in Bradford has become the first of its kind in the district to convert to an academy without a private sponsor.

The renamed Woodside Academy in Fenwick Drive will be using its freedom from the National Curriculum to tailor its lessons more to the world of work.

Woodside is the first primary school in the Bradford district to take advantage of a new Government initiative, in which schools with high exam performances, good or outstanding Ofsted reports and well-run finances can make the conversion without funding from a private sponsor.

Principal Jane Browne said the new status would give her school more independence to find its own suppliers and set its own curriculum.

She said: “We are now an independent school that is state-funded and that means we receive our funding directly from the Government instead of the Council.

“It gives us the freedom to buy in services from wherever.

“Also, we don’t have to teach the National Curriculum, so in the future we are going to be looking at devising our own curriculum which really meets the needs of the children, looking at preparing them for the world of work.”

The school marked the change with a new burgundy uniform and logo and celebrated with a puppet show for nursery and reception classes, a visit from Truffles the Clown for years one and two and a trip to the cinema for years three to six.

It also invited some of its first pupils, who studied there soon after it opened in 1957, to meet the current cohort. They included Stephen Clough, who started in 1959, whose grandsons Bradley, Stephen and Tyler are current pupils.

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