White Woods Primary Academy Trust

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The White Woods Primary Academy Trust was established in 2013 and consists of 14 primary schools in the Rotherham area.

The Trust was founded on, and is guided by, a strong ethos centred on improving the life chances of ALL children regardless of background or ability. We aim to deliver high standards of teaching and learning by developing a culture of high expectation and aspiration, providing a rich, broad, balanced curriculum, and ensuring all learners have equal opportunities.

As part of our commitment to continuous improvement and safeguarding our IT systems, we worked with Secure Schools to perform penetration testing and vulnerability assessments on a representative sample of three schools within our trust. Our standardised system setup across these schools ensured both effective results and cost efficiency.


We aimed to identify strengths and weaknesses, specifically focusing on vulnerabilities within our IT networks, policies, procedures, and personnel. The primary risk areas we targeted included:

  • Governance strength and breadth in addressing information security risks, particularly cybersecurity policies and incident management
  • External exposure to cyber criminals
  • Likelihood and impact of phishing attacks
  • Delivery and monitoring of cybersecurity continuous professional development (CPD)

Finding a service provider who could offer a programme that best fitted our needs as a trust as well as one who understood the sector was extremely important to us. When researching and reading about why the company was founded, we were confident that Secure Schools would work sensitively to the demands and context of a busy trust and it’s safe to say we were not disappointed.

Secure Schools Helped Us By

Providing us with technical vulnerability assessments and penetration tests, to measure the real risk level of cyber-attacks and inform risk assessments, with easy-to-understand reports that can be shared with our board


The post-test report revealed vulnerabilities beyond our initial considerations, providing invaluable insights into our cybersecurity posture. The detailed recommendations and subsequent discussions have enabled us to:

  • Enhance our cybersecurity policies and incident management plans
  • Improve our governance framework concerning cybersecurity
  • Increase awareness and resilience against cyber-attacks within our Trust

Overall, the engagement with Secure Schools has significantly strengthened our cybersecurity measures, making us more informed, resilient, and proactive.


"I highly recommend Secure Schools for their expertise and professionalism. The entire process, from initial consultation to post-test follow-up, has been invaluable in strengthening our cyber security framework."

Andy Blatch, Trust IT Lead at White Woods Primary Academy Trust


"We’ve found the whole process very reassuring in supporting improvement in an area of weakness for the Trust. Paul and the team are excellent at sharing their knowledge with clear and concise communication with staff of differing levels of technical skills. The focus on improvement rather than inspection really helped make the process impactful.”

Mark Tait COO at The Three Rivers Learning Trust