Open Letter 2 to the IEB

Open Letter to the IEB

 10th July 2014

Dear Interim Executive Board, 

Following the meeting consultation and information evening that was held at school on Monday 7th July at 6pm we would like to thank the IEB of St Joseph’s who arranged the attendance of the following people:

  • Cathal Lynch (IEB)
  • Denise Flynn (IEB)
  • Deacon Peter Middleton (Diocese)
  • Rev Jonathan Veasey (DES – Director of the Diocesan Education Service)
  • Michael Moran (DES – Deputy Director: School Effectiveness)
  • Janet Rowe (DES – Deputy Director: Capital Projects and School Place Planning),
  • Yvonne Brennan (DES – Deputy Director: Curriculum and School Improvement)
  • Richard Potter (DES – Schools’ Officer)
  • Jackie Tomlinson (Executive HT St Josephs and St. Martin de Porres School)
  • Helen Miles (Birmingham LA)
  • Jacqueline Byrne (DfE – Policy Advisor & Team Leader)
  • Rob Briscoe. (DfE)
  • Hollie Parish (Partnership Business Manager at St. Thomas Aquinas Catholic School)

The letter from the IEB stated that this would be a consultation and information meeting about the MAC and it invited questions from parents to be emailed in advance of the meeting to help prepare the IEB. There was considerable discussion about the MAC from all parties including representation from the DfE in London and a useful presentation from the DES on the proposed MAC model.

It is clear so far that there are confusions about the MAC models and process of conversion and at what stage of consultation we are in? Parents at the school have had little information since July 2013 and as we are about to come out of an Ofsted category it was stated by the DfE that the whole process to convert the school to MAC might take just 4 months.

Whilst the potential advantages of MAC conversion were explored in Mr Moran’s presentation, there was no formal exploration of the potential disadvantages for St Joseph’s Catholic Primary School of such a conversion.

DES said this was ‘not a consultation’ and also that emails sent in would not be answered.

There was no formal unbiased session on the reasons to convert or not to convert St Joseph’s Catholic Primary School to a MAC.

A number of the parent body were not at the important meeting due to family commitments a lot of whom have signed the petition (which can be viewed at and therefore they are not being kept informed of the situation or discussion that took place on Monday.

It is important that, as a challenging academic year comes to a close, everybody should know where the IEB, School and Diocese currently stand in regards to St Joseph’s Catholic Primary moving forward as part of a MAC.

On this basis it is reasonable request that the IEB / DES write to the parents informing them of the following:

1)    the current status of the MAC as of 7th July 2014

2)    the current status of St Joseph’s Catholic Primary School in the MAC

3)    who if any has been appointed to represent St Josephs on the MAC Board

4)    the MAC models and schemes as set out in the presentation by Michael Moran ( a copy of the presentation would be useful)

5)    the next steps the School and Diocese plan to take and when, such as proposed conversion date.

This level of detail will ensure the parent body and school community as a whole is more up to date with the progress of the conversion of St Joseph’s Catholic Primary School as part of a MAC.

Thank you for arranging the meeting.

We look forward to an urgent written response within 7 working days to the group and the wider parent body.

Yours faithfully,


Ask St Joseph’s Parents

CC: Head Teacher,  Diocesan Education Service,  MAC Partnership Manager


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