Over a million young people attend Church of England schools and academies in England, with 15 million people alive today who went to one.
Regionally, this national church school system is overseen, monitored and SIAMS (Statutory Inspection of Anglican and Methodist Schools) inspected by individual dioceses. The Diocese of Ely region covers a learner catchment of 1,500 sq. miles; Cambridgeshire, South Peterborough, West Norfolk and West Suffolk.
Our schools and academies serve the needs of all faiths and none and are open to children and parents from across the community regardless of background, perspective, religion or culture. They are not faith schools, but community schools. They are however part of our mission to educate children in an environment that reflects our Christian values in the communities we serve. Our schools and academies are thus very popular with parents of all faiths and none.
All Ely church schools and academies are state funded, with day-to-day operational responsibility & accountability falling to a legally designated 'Responsible Body' (such as the local authority, governors and trustees). Typically the school land and buildings are owned by the diocese and maintained by the schools.
Within the Diocese of Ely there are currently 84 Church schools and academies, collectively supporting over 30,000 parents, 15,700 learners, 2000 leaders and teachers, 1000 governors, and our much valued volunteers, clergy and church lay colleagues. The diocese currently also has two new secondary schools in pre-opening or development stage, having already created and opened 4 new schools in recent years.
The Diocese of Ely Education Directorate has full information about our schools and organisational aims, values and structures. We deliver our education programme through a small team, led by Sarah Conant, Interim Diocesan Director of Education, with oversight from our Trustees on the Board of Education.
By legal requirement - like all dioceses - Ely has a Diocesan Board of Education (DBE), served by the Diocesan Director of Education (DDE) who is appointed by the Bishop, and supported by a small expert team of Officers. In the case of Ely, the DDE is also Group CEO of the Diocese of Ely Education Trust (DEET), an umbrella charitable trust for education provision (including DEMAT) across the Diocese.
The role of the Diocesan Director of Education/Group CEO is to oversee, monitor and organise the SIAMS inspection of all Church schools and the Responsible Bodies that run them, and represent and protect the interests of 50 Diocesan education charitable trusts plus 87 school trust deeds. The DDE also fulfils some important ex-officio positions at national and local level (including statutory committees at the Local Authority) pertaining to educational delivery across the region and beyond.
Training and Workshops - Engage, Grow, Deepen
- To view the training courses available to our adult school support workers and staff, view our school training and development pages.
With the exception of three excellent stand-alone diocesan academies (St Bede's, All Saints March and Bourn), Church academies within the Diocese are members of the successful and thriving Diocese of Ely Multi-Academy Trust (DEMAT) and ACT Multi-Academy Trust.
DEMAT was established by the Diocesan Board of Education specifically as a stand-alone legal entity and is one of the biggest academy trusts in the country (39 schools).
ACT Multi Academy Trust is our newest Academy Trust, established on 1 September 2023.
Both successful trusts, have their own Board of Trustees (including the DDE or the DDE's nominated representative). They also report to the Department for Education, as the majority funding body.