New academy trust now officially open

Headteachers Con Todd and Felicity Penny, with Joe Hughes, director of the Diocesan Education Service, Keith Pugh, chair of the Pax Christi Catholic Partnership Multi Academy Trust, and students.
Headteachers Con Todd and Felicity Penny, with Joe Hughes, director of the Diocesan Education Service, Keith Pugh, chair of the Pax Christi Catholic Partnership Multi Academy Trust, and students.

A new academy that has seen three of the region’s schools joined together, has this week officially opened its doors.

St Benet Biscop Catholic High School in Bedlington, joined St Peter and Paul’s in Cramlington, to form the new Pax Christi Catholic Academy.

The new academy, which officially launched on Monday, September 7, will provide a new Catholic education system which caters for three to 18 year olds in south east Northumberland.

As part of the academy’s launch Ian Lavery, MP for Wanbeck, visited St Benet Biscop Catholic Academy on the first day of term to carry out a cutting of the ribbon ceremony and welcome new and returning students.

He was joined by the academy’s head teachers, Con Todd and Felicity Penny, Joe Hughes, director of the Diocesan Education Service and several students.

Con Todd said: “The new academy gives us a unique opportunity to offer the best possible Catholic education, curriulum and educational opportunities for our young people.

“As a multi-academic trust we can pool our resources and expertise in order to maximise our potential and achieve the necessary efficiencies and economifes of school.

“We want sustainable Catholic education in Northumberland and we believe the best way of achiving that is working together.”

Felicty Penny added: “We are delighted that we are now part of the multi academy trust with St Benet Biscop, because it formalises a long standing succsesful partnership.

“It will mean we can offer through put Catholic education from age three to 18.”

The new academy will also focus on developing their students via expansive education days designed to develop their resilience, confidence and future development.

Joe Hughes, director of the Diocesan Education Servuce, Hexham and Newcastle Diocses, said: “We are delighted that this academy trust has now opened.

“It is Christ at the centre, and working together in partnership to futureproof Catholic education in Northumberland.”

Wansbeck MP Ian Lavery added: “From what we have seen, the students at this academy trust will have a bright and healthy future here.

“Good luck to everyone that is involved, all the staff and pupils.”

The new academy will also be holding an open evening on Thursday, September 17.