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Vale of York Academy

Name change confirmed: Canon Lee School to become Vale of York Academy

Governors have confirmed today that Canon Lee School in York is to be renamed Vale of York Academy. After lengthy consultation governors at the school voted to change the name to Vale of York Academy as they believe the time is right to reposition the school for the next chapter in its history.

The school is in the process of becoming an academy and early next year will be joining with other local schools, including Manor Church of England Academy, Poppleton Ousebank, Forest of Galtres and Burton Green, to become part of the Hope Sentamu Learning Trust.

Canon Lee School opened in 1941 as a flagship community school and at the time, it was at the forefront of innovation, challenge and aspiration. 75 years on, staff and governors wish to mark the school’s evolution with a new identity – but it is not just the name that is changing. As a sponsored academy under the Hope Sentamu Learning Trust the school has seen a change in leadership, will see a change of uniform, and will work closely with Manor School to align curriculum choices for students entering Key stage 4.

Paul Black, Chair of Governors, says “This provides us with a natural opportunity to rename the school as part of our journey to create a genuinely outstanding place of learning and community transformation. It is in this context that governors decided that a change of name is appropriate.

“Governors are committed to supporting staff and students in creating a terrific school which will build on the best of Canon Lee, while being positioned to attract potential students within the wider region.”

Helen Dowds, Principal, is looking forward to working with other schools in the Trust. She says “The partnership with Hope Sentamu Learning Trust and, importantly, with its partner school Manor Church of England Academy, is significant as it is unique to the schools in York. No other multi-academy trust exists as yet in this area that gives scope for two secondary schools to work in collaboration.

“By joining together our students will get the advantage of shared staffing expertise, joint school trips and events, plus – most excitingly – a shared curriculum offer at Key Stage 4. The benefits of this cannot be underestimated.”

Brian Crosby, Executive Principal of the Hope Sentamu Learning Trust explains: “Vale of York and Manor have their own unique identities and these differences will be celebrated and remain separate but as time goes on, it is our intention to share resources to offer more choice and greater opportunities for students and staff at both institutions. It is an exciting prospect. Times are changing and we are embracing these changes and making them work for the benefit of our young people.”

An open evening will be held at the school on Monday 3 October from 6pm – 9pm. There will be two presentations, the first at 6pm, followed by a second sitting at 6.45pm. The Principal will explain more about how Canon Lee is transforming into Vale of York Academy and outline the reasons why the school feels it is a strong option for people in the local community. There will also be an opportunity to take a student-led tour of the school. All are welcome to attend.

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