Stephen Dean - Primary Quest CEO

Some of you might recognise Stephen from his visits to our school.  After our last full Ofsted inspection in January 2022, Stephen and his team at Primary Quest began working with us as part of our school improvement strategy.  The Governors are grateful to the Department for Education's South West Regional Team who kindly commissioned and funded this work.

Stephen is an experienced Head Teacher and since September 2023, has taken on the role of CEO for the MAT on a full time basis.  He will be attending our open evening event on Monday 4 December from 6pm in the school hall.  We hope as many of you as possible will come along to learn more about our school's conversion to an academy when it joins the Primary Quest MAT.

Since January 2022 we have seen first hand the benefits for a small rural village school in joining a MAT.  Most importantly, we've seen the importance of being part of a group of schools who not only understand the unique nature of village schools but are fully committed to maintaining their central role in our rural communities.  

We've provided some frequently asked questions about MATs together with Primary Quest's business plan for 2023-26 which can be accessed from the links at the top of this page.  As always, if you have any questions or comments please do get in touch by email or you can submit your comments via our online feedback form which can be accessed here.

Message from the Chief Executive Officer

On 1st July 2019, Primary QuEST Multi Academy Trust was formed. The Trust had been in existence in an informal capacity as Primary QuEST since 2011 when Highnam, Redmarley and Staunton and Corse Church of England Academies became stand-alone academies. The outward facing nature of the academies has enabled quality CPD provision for staff and vibrant curriculum learning opportunities for our pupils.

The Trust was set up with the clear vision of developing a MAT vision and structure whilst retaining the identity and uniqueness of each of the academies. In the areas of finance, governance, reporting and professional development in particular, Primary QuEST has made significant progress and demonstrated good practice. This was why in 2018 Hartpury C of E Primary Academy decided to join Primary QuEST and the plans for a multi-academy trust.

As the Chief Executive Officer of the Primary QuEST Multi Academy Trust, I have been in the privileged position to help shape and embed the MAT vision in the initial stages of its inception. I have worked collaboratively across the PQ group of Academies and sought to support pupils and staff on their journey through life. Whilst we will develop efficiencies together I also believe that it is vital to retain the individuality of the Academies, what works for one Academy doesn’t mean what is best for another.

However, there are many areas where consistency will help deliver excellence, particularly in financial practice and teaching and learning, and the goal for the Trust is to get the right blend of uniqueness and autonomy to ensure that Primary QuEST is an outstanding MAT for all stakeholders.  I am certain that the next few years will be an exciting time for the children, families and staff at all Primary QuEST Academies.

At the centre of all our plans is the culture we wish to maintain as a MAT, based on Christian values and achieved through: collaboration, raising aspirations and exploring new ideas. We are a MAT which works together to get the best out of everyone, including the staff, and which wishes to become a beacon of excellence in all areas, including finance and governance. We want to make a positive difference, and this also extends to supporting the education of local pupils outside of the Trust, using our expertise to raise standards and bring about lasting improvement.

We are dedicated to guiding, supporting and improving our academies, ensuring a clear focus on improving leadership, governance, teaching and learning and raising standards for all.

I look forward to working with all the academies and all stakeholders to ensure our work has a positive impact on everyone within the Primary QuEST MAT.

Stephen Dean, Chief Executive Officer

Click here to learn more about Primary Quest on their website