South-West Norfolk MP Elizabeth Truss has welcomed the announcement that a new trust has taken over Downham Market Academy.

It was revealed this week that the Cambridgeshire Educational Trust will oversee the academy’s “improvement journey”.

The move comes after the  1,500-pupil secondary school, which was previously part of the College of West Anglia Trust, was placed under special measures.

In a damning report published by Ofsted last week, it stated that ineffective leadership had been tolerated for “too long” and pupil attendance was low.

Now it has been confirmed the Regional Schools Commission appointed the new trust, which runs Chesterton Academy.

The Cambridge academy is one of 138 schools in the country to receive a letter from schools minister Nick Gibb who congratulated the school for the progress of its students in March.

Ms Truss hailed the appointment for Downham Market Academy as a “positive step in the right direction”.

She said: “The trust has a track record of excellent results. It’s founding school is in the top five per cent of schools in the country for achievement,” she said.

“I will continue to check on progress to ensure the promised improvements are delivered and will be meeting local parents soon to make sure they are being listened to.”

The trust said it has devised a “turnaround plan” to take the academy on its improvement journey.

The plan includes a focus on the quality of teaching and recruitment and the appointment of Rolf Purvis, as head at the school.

There will also be a five day, fresh start training programme in September to launch the new approach at the academy.

Cambridgeshire Educational Trust’s chief executive officer, Lucy Scott, said: “Downham Market’s community deserves a great school and we look forward to working with all stakeholders to achieve this.”

Your Local Paper understands Ms Truss will be meeting with parents of pupils of the academy today by appointment only.

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