Oasis academies




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OASIS ACADEMIES


JUNE 2010
                                                                                                                                             
Oasis Trust (known as ‘Oasis’) is a UK-based Christian registered charity founded by Reverend Steve Chalke in 1985, after being assistant minister at Tonbridge Baptist Church, Kent for four years.
Over the last 22 years Oasis Trust has developed into a family of charities now working on five continents and 11 countries around the world, to deliver housing, education, training, youth work and healthcare. Oasis provides services for, local authorities and national governments, as well as self funded initiatives aimed at providing opportunity to people across the globe.
(http://www.oasisglobal.org/)
Steve Chalke, the founder, is a prominent, and often outspoken, Christian leader and social activist and an ordained Baptist minister. He is best known as the founder of Oasis Trust, Faithworks, Stop the Traffik and Church.co.uk but he is also the author of numerous books and articles as well as a regular presenter and contributor on television and radio programmes. In 2004 he was awarded an MBE for his services to social inclusion.
In 2001, Steve Chalke laid the foundations for the Faithworks Movement. Faithworks states that its mission is to:


  1. empower and inspire Christians and churches to develop their role at the hub of their community;




  1. challenge and change public perception of the Church engaging both government and media;




  1. encourage unity and partnership.

In February 2010, Faithworks held a conference ‘360-Building Whole Communities’ and a Declaration was made ‘Faithworks is calling on the incoming government to recognise the important contribution made by churches and Christian charities to their local communities’.


Faithworks, despite media controversy, claims it welcomes the Equalities Bill because “it enables churches and Christian organisations to outline their ethos as the foundation on which employment decisions are made.”
(http://www.faithworks)
In 2003, Oasis, along with Christ Church and Upton Chapel, united to form Church.co.uk.a growing network of Christian communities which share the same values.
http://www.church.co.uk/

OASIS COMMUNITY LEARNING


Oasis Trust formed Oasis Community Learning in 2004, as an umbrella group, with the purpose of ‘transforming learning, lives and communities’ through the development of Academies. It states on its website that “The work of Oasis Community Learning is motivated and inspired by the life, message and example of Christ, which shapes and guides every aspect of each of our Academies.”
(http://www.oasiscommunitylearning.org/aboutus/)
Oasis, however, is keen to state that ‘Oasis Academies are open to pupils of all faiths and of no faith and are committed to being inclusive of all communities’.
(www.oasiscommunitylearning.org)
One of the key trends to emerge from the Academies programme is the high numbers that are sponsored by religious organisations. Oasis Community Learning presently runs eleven and clearly would like to run more but had a serious setback when Dudley Council recommended, in March 2009, that ‘the authority does not proceed with the provision of two new academies in the borough’. Oasis Trust was due to sponsor an Academy.
NUT CONCERNS/ADDITIONAL INFORMATION
Oasis hit the headlines in October 2008 when it was reported that 150 pupils had ‘rampaged’ through the corridors of the new Oasis Academy Mayfield in Southampton. The pupils complained that promised improvements to the curriculum had not been delivered. The academy was created from the merger of Woolston and Grove Park schools and teachers complained that the split-site arrangements meant that contact with pupils had been lost. They also said the school’s management had been “arrogant” in refusing to listen to their views. Staff threatened to ballot for industrial action unless urgent changes were made to the way the school was organised. John Denham, the local Southampton MP and the former Communities Secretary, questioned whether the sponsor had the experience to run the school.
Ruth Johnson, the school’s principal at the time, who had claimed the incident was ‘very serious but exaggerated’, left the school less than a term after it had opened.
Oasis was chosen to run two Academies in Southampton over a bid from a consortium of local colleges, universities and businesses, even though the council’s own assessment found that the consortium was more likely to raise standards. A survey of local parents also favoured the consortium.
(http://www.tes.co.uk/article.aspx?storycode+6004180)
The teaching unions have negotiated with Oasis a trade union recognition agreement and machinery for consultation and negotiation. The trade union recognition agreement is based largely on the TUC model. The agreement states that Oasis will employ teaching staff on the national terms and conditions for school teachers (the STPCD and Burgundy Book) and does not plan to move away from those agreements.
The agreement and machinery provides a range of entitlements for local representatives and helps protect the role of those who act as local officers. These entitlements include: reasonable time off with pay for representatives during normal working hours; meetings with representatives from Oasis to take place within normal working hours; and reasonable time off during working hours for trade union activities. The policy agreed states that: “Oasis Community Learning and the signatory trade unions are committed to working well together with staff to consult and negotiate where appropriate about terms and conditions and other matters relevant to their employment.” Any problems in this regard should be reported to the NUT regional office.
There have, however, been some problems in negotiating nationally with Oasis. The unions have submitted comments on a range of important procedures including discipline, grievance and allegations against members of staff. Although Oasis has indicated that it would respond positively to the unions’ comments, at the time of writing it had failed to produce appropriately revised versions of these procedures. In addition, Oasis has so far failed to bring forward for discussion draft policies covering key issues such as pay policy and professional development. The unions continue to emphasise to Oasis the urgent need to make progress on employment policies and procedures.
The need for nationally-agreed policies is underlined by a number of local problems experienced with individual Oasis Academies, including the inappropriate use of procedures that have not been agreed with the unions and particular issues such as reports of excessive observations.
Oasis Community Learning has also submitted a formal Expression of Interest in an Academy in Oldham which would replace South Chadderton and Kaskenmoor schools on a new site. Oldham College and E-Act are also interested in the proposed new Academy schools in Oldham. The three academy schools are part of Oldham’s £200 million Building Schools for the Future programme to rebuild, replace or refurbish every secondary school in the Borough.
http://www.tes.co.uk/article.aspx?storycode=6038113
There was also some controversy when the Oasis Academy Wintringham hired the RAF Falcons to commemorate the official opening of the new building with an aerial display from the Royal Air Force Falcons Parachute Display Team due to the cost.
As of September 2009 there were 11 Oasis Academies with a further Academy planned to open in September 2010.
OASIS ACADEMIES


Name of Academy

When opened

Age Range

Specialism

Notes

Oasis Academy Brightstowe

(Formerly Portway School)


(Bristol)

Sept 2008

11-16

Mathematics and ICT with Business and Enterprise

It was given £1.8 million to develop a (21st ICT capability).

Oasis Academy Bristol

(Opened in the existing building of Hengrove Community Arts College)


(Bristol)

Sept 2008

11-19

Visual and Performing Arts

A new creative

Curriculum.


A competency based curriculum.
Committed to providing personalised learning.

Oasis Academy Coulsdon

(replacing Coulsdon High School)


(Surrey)

Sept 2008

11-16

Science and Technology with Business and Enterprise

To equip students to fully participate in the business and IT based global economy.
Links with local and national employers.

Oasis Academy Enfield

(Enfield)



Sept 2007

11-18

Business and Enterprise

Opened in new purpose built temporary accommodation.
Transferred to a new building September 2008.
Partnered with Oasis Uganda and Oasis USA.

Oasis Academy Hadley

(formerly Albany School)


(Middlesex)

Sept 2009

11-18

Maths with ICT and Music

As of September 2010 will become an all-through Academy.
Will transfer to a brand new building on a new site in 2012.

Academic and vocational.





Name of Academy

When opened

Age Range

Specialism

Notes

Oasis Academy Immingham

(Lincolnshire)



Sept 2007

11-18

Engineering and Commerce with an enterprising focus

A careful balance between practical training and academic learning to produce students who go on to run their own businesses and provide employment for others.

Oasis Academy Lord’s Hill
(Southampton)

Sept 2008

11-16

Arts with Business and Enterprise

It is located on 2 sites.

Oasis Academy Mayfield

(Formerly Grove Park Business and Enterprise College and Woolston School Language College)


(Southampton)

Sept 2008

11-16

Global communication

Is using the existing buildings and will transfer to a new building September 2011.
Pupils ‘rampaged’ through corridors October 2008

Oasis Academy MediaCityUK
(Manchester)

Sept 2008

11-18

Media and ICT and Business and Enterprise

Planning to move to state of art new buildings September 2010.

Oasis Academy Oldham

(replacing Kaskenmoor and South Chadderton secondary schools)


(Oldham)

Sept 2010

11-16

Maths and computing

Business and Enterprise



Initially to use existing sites but moving to a new building 2012.

Oasis Academy Shirley Park
(Croydon)

Sept 2009

3-19

English and Performing Arts

The all-through (3-19) Oasis Academy Shirley Park incorporates Ashburton Community School, together with Ashburton Junior and Infant School and the Children’s Centre.

Oasis Academy Wintringham

(formerly Wintringham School)


(Lincolnshire)

Sept 2007

11-16

Sport and Health

Business and Enterprise



In its first year was housed in the existing school buildings.
Transferred to new buildings in February 2009.




24 April 2016

Created: 17 June 2010/CM&SA

Revised: 24 June 2010/SA


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