With the number of academies in England continuing to grow at pace – there are currently just over 7,000 open with a further 1,200 in the pipeline – the trend for schools converting or opening newly as academies looks far from diminishing.
As such, it will be with great interest that we head to London’s ExCeL centre on Wednesday 25 April for this year’s Academies Show. The pace at which many schools have switched to academy status or others have opened from scratch means that many senior leaders will have encountered unforeseen challenges – and there will almost certainly be more to come.
Taking a look through the agenda for the Academies Show, there are a plethora of potentially fascinating discussions and presentations, but the standout event looks set to be the keynote speech from David Carter on behalf of the Department for Education. David is the National Schools Commissioner, with overall responsibility for the academies system and its development, so his speech on the strategic challenges facing multi-academy trusts (MATs) in the near future will, I’m sure, be fascinating.
Throughout the show, we’ll be exhibiting on stand 516, demonstrating the products that we’ve developed specifically for the academy and MAT markets and solutions from our partners that help meet the needs of academies. Here’s some information on the products we’ll be showcasing: -
Our newly-released financial solution for academies and MATs provides a consolidated view of finances from right across your school or group. With the ability to drill down into individual transactions in a matter of clicks from clear, graphical dashboards, SIMS Finance provides senior leaders and finance managers with the ability to quickly identify opportunities for cost savings in addition to being able to compare spending across departments or groups.
With data being collected across your academy and trust group, it can be a challenge to present it all in a single way that allows for straightforward comparison, interpretation and analysis. SIMS SchoolView makes use of clear, easy to interpret dashboards that present a consolidated view of data from across an academy or a group, providing you the right information to make informed decisions.
Recording and managing safeguarding concerns must rank among the most important tasks for schools, and MyConcern provides an easy-to-use and fully secure, online solution that can be trusted and relied upon. Staff have the ability to make records of emerging issues and detail actions required and taken from across a school or group, with automatic notifications sent to the designated safeguarding lead when new concerns arise.
GDPR in Schools (GDPRiS)
From 25 May 2018, the data protection laws in the UK will be replaced with the General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR), bringing a number of challenges to the way schools collect, use and manage their data. GDPRiS offers a cloud-based data protection monitoring solution for schools, helping to simplify the processes around this crucial task and encourage a proactive approach to meeting and exceeding the new regulations.
There’s a huge agenda for the Academies Show, across the main stage, multiple learning theatres and other arenas. If you’re attending, check out the full Academies Show line-up and make sure you visit us to find out what’s happening with SIMS.