South Ayrshire Council is asking parents, families and staff at Ayr and Kyle Academies for their views on a proposed trial to share a Head Teacher between the two schools.
Feedback from the consultation, which runs until 28 October, will be presented to Councillors and education representatives next month when they are asked to consider the proposal and decide whether it should go ahead or not.
The proposed trial is being suggested by Educational Services as a way to help ensure all pupils are given the best possible opportunities at school that can then translate into increased attainment, more positive outcomes and improved life chances.
The proposal is based on one Executive Head Teacher working across the two school sites, with both schools retaining their own buildings (which, for Ayr, will be the new building from August 2017), staffing, pupils, identity and ethos.
That Executive Head Teacher would then be supported by an individual Executive Depute Head Teacher in each school – one in Ayr and one in Kyle. The Executive Depute Heads would be responsible for the day-to-day management of their individual school.
The proposed approach would, in effect, enhance the senior management capacity within each school. And the benefits of the proposed approach – for staff and pupils – would come from sharing best practice and resources between the two schools, which would both be accountable to the one Executive Head.
Douglas Hutchison, South Ayrshire Council's Director of Educational Services, said: "We already have a successful track record of sharing Head Teachers at primary school level. The productive and constructive benefits this brings – for example, enhancing opportunities for staff in terms of professional dialogue and learning with colleagues working in the same subject area – is something we believe would also work at a secondary level.
"There would be no difference in the day-to-day experience of our young people; however, we would hope, in time, to see a difference in the outcomes achieved.
"Of course, the decision to go ahead with such a trial is one for our Councillors to take and the feedback from this consultation will help inform their consideration of the matter. I would urge people from both school communities to let us know what they think, so their views can be taken into account."
Feedback on the consultation can be submitted until 4pm on Friday 28 October by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or writing to Douglas Hutchison, Director of Educational Services, South Ayrshire Council, County Buildings, Wellington Square, Ayr, KA7 1DR.