AN ACADEMY trust that pulled out of a planned link-up with University Academy Keighley “suffered a vacuum in the standards of leadership”.

This was the finding of an annual report into Wakefield City Academies Trust (WCAT), which last September announced it was pulling out of all 21 of the schools it ran.

UAK had been poised to join the schools in being sponsored by the trust until the proposed partnership was scrapped in December 2016.

The school in Beechcliffe was instead reunited with its previous sponsor, the University of Bradford, continuing a connection began in 2010 when the former Greenhead High School became UAK.

In 2015 the Department for Education (DfE) recommended Wakefield City Academies Trust as a potential new sponsor for UAK when the school’s results dipped to 16 per cent.

This month the Wakefield trust released its annual report and financial statements, revealing some of the background that led to WCAT’s announcement it would transfer its schools to other academy chains before winding itself up.

It reveals that results at many of its schools were disappointing, and a review of the trust found it did not have the capacity to improve these results.

However, the accounts, which look at the year up to August 2017, reveal that the trust “will continue to be financially solvent until the point it is wound-up”. Concerns had been raised by governors and politicians that WCAT was using school funds to prop itself up in light of financial difficulties.

The report says: “Moving forward, the short and medium-term financial plan details an improving surplus and reserves position on a year-by-year basis. It is envisaged the trust will be financially solvent beyond the point of re-brokering and until the point of wind-up.”

The three Bradford primary schools that WCAT currently runs will be taken over by the Tauheedul Education Trust later this year.

It is expected that the entire trust will be wound up in August.