Federation Consultation

Over three years the leaders of Pinhoe C of E (VA) Primary School and Woodbury C of E (VA) Primary School have worked in partnership to develop each school. Financial demands and the desire to extend opportunities for our staff and children have led to our schools making the decision to consider working more formally together in a federation.

More recently, the governing bodies of both schools have discussed the many ways in which both schools could benefit by making the partnership a more permanent arrangement. This consultation is part of the process of forming a federation between the two schools.

 What is a federation?

A federation is a family of schools, with each school retaining its unique character within its own community; its own name and uniform. Each school will have a separate Ofsted and Church inspections and the performance data is published separately.

The current admissions process will remain the same with children being admitted to each school under their individual Admissions Policy. The schools within the federation will share one governing board consisting of representatives from both school communities and ensuring that the Christian distinctiveness of both schools will continue to be upheld.

There is no single blue print for federation; each federation is tailored to the needs of the different schools and communities that are involved.  There are currently approximately 35 federations across Devon, involving over 80 schools, with the first federations in Devon forming in 2006 and many others considering this as a successful sustainable model for their school’s future.

We are proposing to federate to ensure continuing strong leadership and high standards in teaching and learning whilst maintaining each school’s individual ethos and values.


What will the benefits be for our schools?

  •  Sharing strong and proven leadership;
  • Sharing teaching expertise;
  • Availability of teaching resources;
  • Increasing opportunities for the children to mix with a wider group both academically and socially;
  • Greater access to a wider range of resources and opportunities to make some savings to reinvest in children’s learning;
  • Joint planning and curriculum development opportunities for staff;
  • Joint training of staff to impact on children’s’ learning;


How will this work?

 It is proposed that the federation will start on 1st January 2020 with an Executive Headteacher leading both schools. There will be a full-time non-teaching Head of School within each school. The Heads of School will focus their energies on the day to day leadership of the school teaching, learning and standards. They will both be supported by Assistant Headteachers who will have some teaching responsibility.

 The federation will have one governing board composed of representatives from each school community. The make-up of the governing board has to adhere to Regulations.

 The membership of this single governing board includes representation for parents and staff, foundation (church) governors, co-opted governors and a local authority governor.  The governing board will have overall responsibility for both schools within the federation.

The proposed size of the federated governing body would be 16, this would include:


2 Parent governors

1 Staff governor

 Executive Headteacher

1 Local Authority appointed governor

9 Foundation governors (to include an ExOfficio)

2 Co-opted governors


The Governing Boards are proposing that the federation start date will be 1st January 2020, the first day of the spring term.


The Consultation Process

The Governors of both schools have set up a consultation process to seek the views of parents, staff, the community, the local authority, the Diocese and other key partners. 

The consultation process will last 6 school weeks, starting from Monday 13th May 2019.


Governors would welcome your views and comments.


Written responses should be addressed to ‘The Chair of Governors’ of your school and must be received by Monday 1st July 2019.  A box for written responses will be provided in each school. The federation will need a name. If you have any ideas, please include them in your written response.

 You can also share your comments via email to either:

 Pinhoe: Consultation@pinhoe.devon.sch.uk

 Woodbury: Consultation@woodbury.devon.sch.uk


The decision to federate will ultimately be the Governors of both schools who will make the final decision, drawing upon a broad evidence base including the views of staff and parents. The governing board for each school considering federation takes its own decision. As with any governing board decision, this is a simple majority taken at a meeting of the full governing body.


Please see the Consultation Document below for further details.

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