Brand identity for Leigh Academies Trust

Leigh Academy Minster

Leigh Academy Minster will adopt the highly-successful small school model of education available in other LAT secondary schools. This is designed to ensure excellent pastoral care so that young people can succeed in school. It ensures that pupils always know where to go and have trusted adults to speak to if they are facing challenges or difficulties. The small school model also ensures excellent communication and relationships with families so that we can work together for the benefit of our young people.

There will be four small schools in total, three for years 7-11 and one for post-16, all based in separate accommodation. Sixty pupils in each of years 7-11 will be based in the three 11-16 colleges which will be their pastoral base within the wider academy. Pupils will be taught in their college groups at key stage 3 with appropriate ability setting for core subject areas. One of the 11-16 colleges will be for higher ability pupils offering a “grammar stream” model. Within their college, pupils will belong to a single-year tutor group, but embedded within the vertical structure of their wider college where older pupils provide mentoring opportunities to younger pupils.

Post-16 students will be based in the fourth college for those in years 12-13. Each of the four colleges will have its own Head of College (Vice Principal), reporting to the Principal. In turn, they will manage a team of assistant principals, subject leaders, teachers and student services managers whose role is to provide excellent pastoral care and curriculum opportunities for pupils. 

At key stage 3 (years 7-9) pupils will study the full National Curriculum within the International Baccalaureate (IB) Middle Years Programme (MYP). This is a highly-ambitious and well-established curriculum offered in grammar schools, fee-paying schools and international schools. All LAT secondaries offer the MYP which has been highly praised by Ofsted. The programme is broad and balanced and seeks to develop holistic learners ready to participate successfully in the world once they leave school. The IB encourages all schools to ensure that curriculum content is embedded in the local context whilst developing pupils’ international mindedness. The particular curriculum content chosen will be driven by local leaders with support from the Trust in order to recognise and celebrate the academy’s unique island characteristics. All pupils, regardless of year group, will enjoy one lesson per week of Personal, Social, Health and Relationships Education to ensure excellent personal development.

At key stage 4, pupils will study a wide range of GCSEs and BTECs. All pupils will study English literature, English language, maths, core PE and double science (some pupils will have the chance to study triple science). In addition, pupils will opt for history or geography, plus two further options of their choice from a range of curriculum areas. The study of a modern foreign language will not be compulsory at key stage 4.

In the sixth form, students will follow the International Baccalaureate Careers-related Programme (IBCP) already offered in five other LAT academies, plus a number of non-selective sixth forms throughout Kent. In addition, LAM intends to offer T Levels and other work-based qualifications drawing upon the specialist facilities and teaching expertise available at the Minster Campus. LAT and the East Kent Colleges Group will work together to ensure a joined-up curriculum offer for sixth formers on Sheppey to maximise choice and support the local economy.

All pupils at LAM will be issued with their own Chromebook to access the online LAT curriculum platform and to ensure that the transition between learning at home and school is seamless. Chromebooks will be provided to pupils at no cost to their families. The approach to behaviour management will align with LAT’s disruption-free learning model. The academy will run a one-week timetable of 24 lessons and will close early to pupils on a Wednesday to provide high-quality professional development opportunities for staff starting at 2pm. The timetable will comply with government expectations of a 32.5 hour week for pupils.