In December 2019 the Bishop and the Diocesan Directors agreed a strategic plan for Catholic education in the Diocese of Hexham and Newcastle. The Diocesan Academy Policy of December 2019 outlines the plan for all schools to convert to academy status. Underpinning this Diocesan Academy Policy, is the desire and need to ensure the promotion, preservation, protection and future development of Catholic education within the Diocese of Hexham and Newcastle so that it is fit for the mission of the Church. In establishing the trust structures and having a single system in our Diocese, the aim is to ensure that the children and young people in our schools will continue to receive the very best educational opportunities and life fulfilling experiences, within communities which have the teachings of Christ and his Church at the very centre.
The aim is that all 156 schools will be within one of four Catholic Education Trusts by July 2022. The four Trusts are all named after founding bishops of the Diocese and each covers a regional area:
- Bishop Bewick Catholic Education Trust (39 schools in Newcastle, Northumberland, and North Tyneside)
- Bishop Chadwick Catholic Education Trust (34 schools in City of Sunderland, East Durham and South Tyneside)
- Bishop Hogarth Catholic Education Trust (35 schools in Darlington, Hartlepool, South Durham and Stockton)
- Bishop Wilkinson Catholic Education Trust (48 schools in North and Central Durham, Gateshead, Prudhoe and Hexham).
The Trusts in the Diocese of Hexham and Newcastle are governed by 5 Diocesan Members: the Bishop, the Vicar General, the Episcopal Vicar for Education, the Director of Education, and the Diocesan Financial Secretary. A Trust board is appointed to each Trust and is responsible for the ethos and mission, leadership and finances of the Trust. Each school has a local governing committee that carries out the governance functions of each school on behalf of the Trust Board. The shared Catholic vision of the Trust is underpinned by mission and aims of each school.
The Catholic Education Trust model that has been adopted ensures that every school has its place and means that no individual school will be left isolated or vulnerable in a rapidly changing educational environment. All schools join the Trust as equal partners. The uniqueness of each individual school is celebrated and the unique contribution of each is recognised and appreciated.
Find out more about our Catholic Education Trusts via the links below: