Although our school name remains St Mary’s Catholic School, we have been an independent Academy since 2013. In June 2020, we were also delighted to join the Bishop Bewick Catholic Education Trust, one of four large trusts within the Diocese of Hexham and Newcastle. As an Outstanding school, we were also appointed by the government as a National Support School in 2011, with the mandate to share our best practice in academic achievement with other schools nationwide. We were also delighted to be awarded National Teaching School status by the government in June 2017, with the remit of leading teacher training across the north-east of England, as well as providing leadership development and school improvement support to other schools in the region. In 2019, we were ranked 1st, as the leading state school in the north-east, in the Real Schools’ Guide to state schools nationally.