Plymouth High School for Girls joins Thinking Schools Academy Trust

One of Plymouth’s oversubscribed secondary schools has joined the high-performing Thinking Schools Academy Trust.

Plymouth High School for Girls and Thinking Schools have been in discussions and sharing practice in recent months, leading to the transfer of the school to the trust formally taking place today following approval by the Department for Education.

Plymouth High is rated Good by Ofsted and led by Headteacher Simon Underdown, who joined in September 2019. It is the 16th school to be part of Thinking Schools, which was rated by the Department for Education as the best academy trust in the South East for GCSE results in 2020 and whose other primary and secondary schools are across coastal cities and towns – in Medway, Deal (in Kent) and Portsmouth.

Some of the immediate projects that the school and trust will work on include a large investment in PHSG’s IT infrastructure, creating a platform for Trust wide student leadership opportunities and support for PHSG to become the first accredited Thinking School in Plymouth.

Simon Underdown, Headteacher of Plymouth High School for Girls

Simon Underdown, Headteacher of Plymouth High School for Girls, said:

“We provide a high-quality learning experience at our school. Our teachers are experienced, dedicated and possess a real passion for teaching lessons that have the students engaged and interested. All staff at the school really do want the very best for our students and engage enthusiastically in continually developing their own practice.

“We and Thinking Schools very much share the same values and we are very excited about this partnership, and the potential it offers our school, our staff and above all our students to achieve even more.”

Stuart Gardner, the Chief Executive of Thinking Schools Academy Trust

Stuart Gardner, the Chief Executive of Thinking Schools Academy Trust, said:

“We are thrilled to welcome Plymouth High School for Girls to the Thinking Schools family, making us a close-knit 16 schools. Their motto ‘For Life, Not School, We Learn’ is very much on brand for our trust as we are unique in ensuring that our students leave school fully equipped with the tools they need to reflect on the knowledge learned in life. 

“The transition period has seen teams from the school and the trust working collaboratively to provide a firm foundation to kick-start our new and exciting beginnings.

“We are really looking forward to working even more closely with PHSG as they become an incredible part of our Trust, with a successful future ahead.”