Sunnyside Primary Academy in Northampton has achieved the Inclusive School Award for the fourth time.
The Academy’s Ethos
Sunnyside Primary Academy has a warm, welcoming, and inclusive school and they genuinely put the child at the centre of all they do. Parents confirm their unequivocal support of the Academy by stating:
‘This Academy has really improved recently, and the Leadership is improving everything it does to support the children and families.’
The staff truly supports the ethics and ethos of the Academy. This is the foundation that ensures that children get the absolute best. This now permeates through everything they do as an Academy. There is a real purpose and drive across the Academy where all stakeholders strive to be inclusive and are willing to go the extra mile for the children. Academy staff believe wholeheartedly in the Leadership Team and stated that there are strong relationships with staff having clear roles and responsibilities in how to improve life chances for the children in their care.
‘We work together to support the children and together we shine.’
Staff Inspire Each Other
The staff inspire each other to ensure that pupils can thrive, understand individuals needs, and begin to make excellent progress. Greenwood Academies Trust Academies aims state:
• Young people are able to succeed in life.
• Leadership and management drive successful pupil and organisational outcomes.
• GATA is a successful trust, guided by principled governance.
These aims are the driving force behind all aspects of the Academy and reinforce the Academy aims of Perseverance, Achievement, Responsibility and Aspiration – all drawn together with the phrase ‘Together We Shine.’ Through the continually developing high-quality curriculum offer that aims to meet individual needs, the children and young people have the best possible foundation to be successful in their future lives, jobs, and relationships. The ‘Together We shine’ values are explicit across the Academy, with staff actively working together, sharing, and learning strategies to support the children in their care. The Academy is passionate about inclusive education. The devoted and enthusiastic SENCO, who is hugely respected amongst staff and parents for her leadership, training, and passion, is now supporting SEND development across the Trust. Staff and parents were keen to express how well she has led inclusion and how this had improved the quality of provision and the consistency across the Academy. This is backed up by the Trust Leadership who talked openly regarding the great work that is being shared effectively with other academies. ‘There is a culture of SEND, collaboration and this is strategic.’
The Academy Has High Expectations
Sunnyside Primary Academy is an Academy where consistently high expectations of pupils have transferred into good outcomes for all. You are greeted by the SENCO who is enthusiastic about the Academy and children. This sets the tone for the day and this care underpins the Academy. It is very welcoming and supportive, with a palpable determination to provide the absolute best education for every child both academically and holistically. Children are firmly at the centre of everything, for all members of the Academy. There is a determined focus on creating a culture of inclusion, which breeds success and a positive climate for learning. The focus is now being transferred to parents and the community to help develop the culture of achievement. There are clear plans for how this is going to be achieved.
The Children Enjoy Learning
Sunnyside Primary Academy is explicit in all that it does and articulates its aims and objects clearly. The Academy believes that the quality of education a child receives empowers their future choices and life chances and they pride themselves on understanding the needs of children and putting in training to support staff in their learning. The Trust Lead and Principal have an unwavering commitment to attaining the highest standards and ambition to provide a high-quality educational experience for every child. This is backed up and evidenced by the high quality of teaching seen particularly but not exclusively in Reception and Year 1, where the love and enjoyment of learning from the children was evident. There is a solid belief in everything the staff do because of the quality of training provided and the support given in monitoring and listening to both children and staff in how to improve the learning experience.
Mental Health is Important
Systems and practices have been put in place to support the most vulnerable children so that they have a sense of belonging, and they are learning the skills and attributes to take ownership of their own personal development. This may be behavioural, where children are able to self-direct and self-regulate by having discrete equipment that calms them down. For example, the use of squidgy equipment is used by some children. The children understand and use the zones of regulation which is consistent across the Academy. Also, it was a joy to see self-directed children using the sensory wall to continue their learning. The Academy places high importance on the mental health of both staff and children which is intrinsic to how they work within the Academy and not seen as an ‘add on.’
The Academy is Well Managed
Leaders have worked hard at creating consistency in practice and provision across the Academy. Staff have an ambitious vision for providing high-quality education to all pupils, giving them experiences and supporting them to learn in a psychologically safe space. The Leadership is consistently open, transparent, and extremely visible. The Leadership has quickly built a culture and climate where the team learns and develops together and support each other. This is the golden thread that already runs deep in the Academy DNA. Parents strongly agreed that the Academy is now well led and managed. All Leaders ensure that all children are successful are highly visible and accessible. Through their interactions with children and staff, they communicate and model high expectations of behaviour. Difference is accepted by all children and when challenges occur staff explicitly support children in their understanding of needs and adaption to meet needs. This is seen with children having resources available for them on their desks and with them able to access resources in the environment. It is clear leadership qualities from the Principal and SENCO, driven and backed up by the Trust that has played a major role in creating such a reflective and continually developing Academy. The Academy is most informative, inspiring, and well organised and thrives as an inclusive school.
Find out more about the IQM Inclusive School Award
If your school is interested in obtaining the IQM Inclusive School Award or you wish to talk to a member of the IQM team please telephone:
028 7127 7857 (9.00 am to 5.00 pm)
or email: email@example.com for further details.
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