Otter Valley Federation

Believing and Achieving Together to be The Best We Can Be


The Otter Valley Federation

The Otter Valley Federation, which brings together Tipton St John and Feniton Primary Schools, was established in September 2013.

After working together over the course of Spring and Summer 2013, and after consultation with staff, parents, the Diocese, and the Local Authority, the Governors of the two Church of England primary schools agreed that the schools would be stronger together than they were as individual schools.


The schools have very similar visions and approach to education, and by joining in a Federation, they will be better able to share best practice and resources, and to safeguard the high quality learning for all the children in both schools.

What is a School Federation?

The term “federation” is used to describe many different types of collaborative groups, partnerships and clusters of schools.

In this case it means that Mrs Amanda Fulford is Executive Headteacher across both schools and each school has a Head of School; Mrs Sarah Evans at Feniton Primary and Mr Pete Button at Tipton St John Primary. The Executive Headteacher is responsible for the overall leadership and management of the Federation, and each of the Heads of School is responsible for the learning and teaching and day to day running of, their school.

We have one Governing Board which has responsibility for the strategic development and success of the schools. Each school is able to keep its own individual and unique character, while being able to learn from the experience of the other.

The Benefits of Federations

Federation can increase capacity within groups of schools to achieve even higher standards, providing:

  • improved teaching and learning
  • shared activities that bring together the pupils from different schools
  • a structured way for schools to collaborate, learn from each other  and share best practice
  • shared high quality leadership
  • joint staffing opportunities and wider career opportunities across the Federation

Shared Values

Both schools are Church Schools and share a strong commitment to Christian values and these are expressed as “HEART”: Hope, Empathy, Achievement, Reflection and Thankfulness.

In both schools the development of the whole person, academic, social and spiritual is at the core of all we do. To achieve this both schools have worked hard to establish a set of values that are woven into the learning and teaching.

Great learning happens when children are safe and confident. We aim to provide an exciting and stimulating experience across a very broad range of subjects. Our schools engage actively with the local church and the wider community.

Tipton St John School 7

A photograph of Bishop George Takeli when he visited Tipton St. John and Feniton. It has recently been announced that he will be the new Arch Bishop of Melanesia. It is wonderful that he knows about our schools special link as well as the link through Bishop Patteson

  • Ethos

    The Federation shares a strong ethos:

    We aim to reflect God's love, "I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full."

    John 10:10