St Wilfrid’s Academy Achieves Flagship Status
St. Wilfrid’s Academy has achieved the Inclusive School Award with Flagship status.
- The Academy takes a transitional approach to supporting their pupils, through assessment and supportive work through their Taskforce, consisting of an Early Help Coordinator, Youth Justice Worker, Family Support Worker, Careers advisor and therapist.
- Key Stage 4 offers vocational qualifications and positive destinations in partnership with local providers, the success of which is evidenced in their NEETS figures which are extremely low at 4%.
- They have exemplary practice and bespoke curriculum pathways, offering a broad and balanced curriculum, personalised to the students with support from a multidisciplinary team.
- Due to the relationships built with families, the Youth Justice Worker can engage with younger siblings at risk of criminality, therefore supporting engagement at an early stage.
- The Academy provides reading routes which has been adapted from the Delta model to encourage engagement in reading and does not limit the route to a specific age group or year marker in order to encourage reading across all abilities.
- The Assessor observed an extremely engaging English lesson were all students participated in discussion to support their Speaking and Listening for English GCSE.
- The teacher and member of support staff provided interchangeable roles and all students engaged and worked together with their support.
In discussion with 2 of the students from this lesson, 1 described how they prefer the smaller class sizes as “the teacher can focus on you more and if something is going on, they can tell”. The other student explained how he had stopped attending his previous school and prefers the smaller size of the school with less people and how the curriculum supported his learning. It was obvious that he felt more comfortable at St Wilfrid’s than in a mainstream setting as he described, “We are so amazing our brains decided not to work like the mainstream setting wanted,” he described the positive experiences he was having with plans for his future.
The meeting with parents confirmed this describing how the Academy looked at the child and assesses their needs to inform teaching strategies to support his different way of learning which has resulted in higher grades. They described how all the staff are friendly and have formed good relationships with their child, from the minibus driver to Personal Learning Advocates (PLAs) in school stating, “they are so friendly, like the aunties he has never had.” They stated they had a better relationship with effective communication and positive experiences of their child’s education through the Academy providing a regular showcase for parents and provision of excellent tangible rewards.
They stated their child is “completely different because of attending St Wilfrid’s, his social skills are 100% better and talks to everyone like they are family,” and felt the school should be replicated which is certainly high praise for the Academy methods and their ethos. All of which provide evidence of St Wilfrid’s continuing efforts to successfully reengage reluctant learners and further improve their attendance.