The Whitehaven Academy

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The Whitehaven Academy
Type Academy
Headteacher Vanessa Ray (Acting Principal) Yvonne Sharples (Acting Associate Principal)
Location Cleator Moor Road

CA28 8TY
 England Coordinates: 54°32′20″N 3°33′27″W / 54.53901°N 3.55741°W / 54.53901; -3.55741
DfE number 909/4000
DfE URN 140406 Tables
Ofsted Reports Pre-academy reports
Students 900
Gender Coeducational
Ages 11–18
Website School homepage

The Whitehaven Academy (formerly Whitehaven School) is a comprehensive co-educational secondary school with academy status, located in Whitehaven, in west Cumbria, England. The school was established in 1984.[1]

A February 2011 report from the Office for Standards in Education, Children's Services and Skills said that the school 'has made inadequate progress in making improvements and demonstrating a better capacity for sustained improvement' in the previous two years, according to a report issued subsequent to an OFSTED team visit in January 2011. Lynette Norris who took over as headteacher in 2011 was described as bringing 'vision and energy' to the school since she took office.[2]

The school converted to academy status in January 2014, sponsored by the Bright Tribe Trust. The Bright Tribe is a multi-academy trust established to help raise the standards of education in our schools. We are passionate about education and are committed to improving the lives of young people. Our experienced education team has proven expertise and success in substantially improving schools, both in the UK and internationally, and our operations team brings considerable business and financial expertise to support the academy.

Bright Tribe shares the same vision for teaching and learning and school ethos as The Whitehaven Academy; a vision focused on the individual learning needs of every child. Bright Tribe has developed a personal learning approach that enables each student to reach the highest level of individual achievement through a customised curriculum and a range of learning skills.

In 2011 Lynette Norris was made the headteacher of 'Whitehaven School' after Malcolm Smith her predecessor retired after holding the role from a number of years. Lynette had previously taught at many schools in the area and at the time was currently a deputy headteacher. During Mid 2014 a letter to parents from The Bright Tribe Trusts Director of Education Professor David Hopkins stated that by mutual interest Lynette was stepping down as 'principal' of The Whitehaven Academy. In a parting message Lynette said, “I have enjoyed every minute of my time at Whitehaven School and latterly at the academy. The students have been an inspiration to me and made me smile every day, I will miss you all and wish you well in your studies - keep working hard – you know it’s worth it. The staff have been supportive and understanding, dedicated and committed; they are a credit to their profession and Whitehaven are lucky to have them. I hope you will stay in touch, it has been a great journey together.”

The letter stated that the vice principal Ms Jacki Smith would become acting principal for at least 12 months. During late 2014 Jacki informed students and staff that she would be leaving the academy due to personal reasons and her resignation would take effect as of 31st December 2014. Since then interviews have been held for the job vacancy but until it has been filled Vanessa Ray the principal of the nearby West Lakes Academy will be taking over as acting principal and will be assisted by Yvonne Sharples from The Bright Tribe Trust.

Notable former pupils[edit]


  1. ^ Whitehaven School website
  2. ^ Clarke, Andrew (2011-02-17). "School ‘fails to raise its standards’ - Ofsted". Whitehaven News (CN Group). Retrieved 2011-04-14. 

External links[edit]