New era for Hartlepool school as it links up with academy trust

Brougham Primary School pupils with headteacher Julie Thomas (extreme right), deputy headteacher Sarah Greenan (second from right) and Andy Brown, chief executive officer of Ad Astra Academy.

Brougham Primary School pupils with headteacher Julie Thomas (extreme right), deputy headteacher Sarah Greenan (second from right) and Andy Brown, chief executive officer of Ad Astra Academy.

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A primary school in Hartlepool has entered a new era after joining an academy trust.

Brougham Primary School, based in Brougham Terrace, Hartlepool, has joined the Ad Astra Academy Trust.

It provides us with a wonderful opportunity to work together with other schools across the Academy Trust

Julie Thomas

The trust is based in the Innovation Centre, at Queens Meadow, on the outskirts of the town.

It has a strapline of ‘stars’ in the making.

Julie Thomas, headteacher of Brougham Primary School and trustee of Ad Astra Academy Trust, has told of how the new partnership provides both organisations with a “wonderful opportunity”.

She said: “We are delighted to join the Ad Astra Academy Trust. It provides us with a wonderful opportunity to work together with other schools across the Academy Trust sharing skills, expertise and good practice to ensure that we achieve the very best for our children.”

The school was described as “good” by Ofsted when government inspectors last visited, and has been welcomed into Ad Astra by its chief executive officer, Andy Brown OBE.

He said: “We are very excited to team up with staff, governors, pupils and parents within the Brougham community and work alongside the school as it continues its journey to outstanding.

“Ad Astra believes in reciprocal learning and already schools within the trust have benefited greatly from Brougham’s expertise, and we are looking forward to using the skills of specialists within Brougham across the trust.”

The trust has increased the team of Ad Astra with the addition of practitioners with expertise in school improvement, estates management, finance, IT and human resources.

Other schools within As Astra Academy Trust include West View Primary and West Park Primary, in Hartlepool, and Rosebrook Primary School, in Stockton. Ad Astra, which is a Latin phrase meaning ‘to the stars’, was launched in 2015 as the vision of West View and West Park Primary Schools.

They have worked in partnership from the start to build the trust, despite a significant social difference in the communities they serve.

The name Ad Astra was chosen as the trust believes that any child or adult working within it can be whatever they want to be with their support and direction.

There are 290 pupils currently at Brougham Primary School, with another 72 nursery children attending part-time.

There are a variety of teaching areas, including a large multi-purpose hall, as well as a small hall, enclosed spaces and practical areas.

High priority is given to numeracy, literacy and oracy.