A SECONDARY school in Taunton has today (Friday, December 1) changed its name.

The former Heathfield Community School, in Monkton Heathfield, is now known as Monkton Wood Academy.

The new name was chosen to reflect the location and semi-rural environment of the 1,384-pupil school following a consultation involving school leaders, staff and students.

It coincides with the secondary and sixth form school becoming an academy as it formally joins the Cabot Learning Federation (CLF), which boasts a strong track record of delivering improvements to schools in the South West..

Monkton Wood Academy principal Hannah Jones said the impact of close collaboration with the CLF has already been seen in a recent Ofsted monitoring visit, which heralded an "ambitious vision and clear plan" for school development that has led to improved student attendance and behaviour.

It followed a requires improvement' Ofsted report last year after Heathfield had previously been judged outstanding.

She added: "We are immensely proud of our school and the positive way it has impacted lives throughout this community over many years.

"It is now time to begin a new phase in the school’s journey, and we are hugely excited about our next chapter.

“Our new name has been chosen after consultation throughout our school community.

"We feel it continues to respect our history, and reflects our location and environment.

"I am pleased the change has been so warmly welcomed.

“Looking ahead, we are delighted to be working within the Cabot Learning Federation family of schools as we continue to build upon the improvements noted by Ofsted during their recent visit.”

It is not the first time the school has changed its name.

West Monkton Secondary Modern School was built in 1956.

It merged with Priory Boys' School in 1978 to form Heathfield Community School.

Since its foundation in 2009, the Cabot Learning Federation has evolved from a small Bristol-based secondary education partnership to a group of nearly 30 schools.

Today, it delivers education to more than 14,000 children and young people aged three to 19 in Bristol, Gloucestershire, South Gloucestershire, Somerset and North Somerset.

The CLF also includes a maths hub, initial teacher training and is a founding partner in the Five Counties Teaching School Hub Alliance.

The trust is sponsored by the University of the West of England and Rolls-Royce PLC.

*In September the former Taunton Academy changed its name to Pyrland School.