THERE could be a delay of up to a year before a York secondary school becomes an academy.

All Saints RC School was set to become part of  brand new 21-school academy chain, St Margaret Clitherow Catholic Academy Trust, on September 1, but that deadline has since been extended.

All Saints, which is located on a split site at Mill Mount and Nunnery Lane in South Bank, is part of the Diocese of Middlesbrough which has 54 Catholic schools and academies spread across seven local authority areas, with some 17,514 pupils.

Sharon Keelan-Beardsley, who took over as head at All Saints in January, referred The Press to the trust for comment.

Kevin Duffy, the diocese director of schools, said: “We have to undergo do diligence and wanted to find out more information from All Saints about their curriculum and its budget.

“It’s definitely coming in to the trust.

“This is just a postponement.”


Amy Rice, chief executive officer for the Trust who is based in York, said: “The conversion process is incredibly bureaucratic.

“There’s nothing sinister behind the delay.

“We’re aiming to get them in by September 2020 and we are working closely with the school and the local authority to make that happen. It’s a delay of up to a year, but it might go quicker than that. We need to do it properly and from the childrens’ point of view day to day, they won’t see a difference.”

York Catholic primary schools St Wilfrid’s, St Aelred’s, St George’s and Our Lady Queen of Martys joined the trust at the start of the new school year, but All Saints didn’t.

The school won the praise of Ofsted at its last inspection in 2016 when it was rated outstanding and accessors said: “In and out of lessons pupils are polite, courteous and have extremely positive attitudes to learning.

"Pupils describe their teachers as being passionate and this love for learning is rubbing off on them."

Margaret Clitherow serves the central church diocesan areas of North Yorkshire, the East Riding of Yorkshire and York.