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The Principal of UTC Warrington is to share his expertise with a school in Northwich as part of a venture between the University Technical College and The Rudheath Senior Academy.

Lee Barber has been approached by the North West Academies Trust (NWAT) to help turn around the fortunes of the school, after a year of success at the UTC in which a Good Ofsted judgement was secured, exam results improved significantly, and the number of students securing high status apprenticeships was over six times the national average.

The two academies will work together to open the eyes of young people across the region. Students at Rudheath will have access to the UTC’s modern science labs, engineering workshops and 3D printing hubs, whilst students in Warrington will be able to visit Northwich to use the school’s sports facilities amongst other opportunities.

Mr Barber who has headed the UTC since before it opened in 2016 says that the opportunity to collaborate with a school that shares the vision of the technical college is too good to miss.

He said: “I am delighted to be asked to work with Rudheath Senior Academy to forge a fantastic new relationship with UTC Warrington. There will be an opportunity to share curriculum expertise, resources and leadership between both institutions.”

“By working with the North West Academies Trust, we will be able to provide invaluable opportunities for young people to achieve their full potential and go into excellent careers. The UTC post-16 offer is an extended facility for the students of Rudheath to learn and thrive in the science, engineering and technology sector with access to our industry-leading equipment and employer partners.”

“Building a strong and positive relationship with Rudheath and the multi-academy trust is a rare but exciting opportunity to share the brilliant work of the UTC with another educational establishment. The opportunities as a result of this shared venture are endless for both organisations and, most importantly, the students who we teach.”

Amanda Downing, who has been Vice Principal at UTC Warrington since before it opened, will take on the role of Associate Principal to coordinate the day-to-day running of the college alongside Mr Barber who will head the college from an executive role.

Mrs Downing said: “I am really excited to be working with Mr Barber and the wider staff team to ensure that our good quality of technical education continues. We are working hard to prepare for the summer exams and the UTCW team are already helping students secure the best careers, apprenticeships and education opportunities for September 2020. This partnership is a great opportunity for the UTC facilities to open up to more young people across the local region.”

NWAT has a reputation for transforming schools, sharing best practice across its network of eight academies, and for delivering a forward-thinking culture.

Rudheath Senior Academy joined NWAT in 2018 and an ambitious improvement plan was put into action.

Steve Docking, CEO of NWAT, said: “This is a great opportunity for both organisations to benefit from working together to share resources, skills and ideas.”

“We believe that every student deserves the best possible education and this partnership will strengthen our work to provide this.”

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