We are looking at expanding our current Alternative Provision. In our Alternative Provision, we are currently working with 11 to 16 year olds who are currently at risk of being excluded from school. Due to the higher rates of permanent and temporary exclusions of young people from Caribbean, Irish and Roma backgrounds, our emphasis will be on the “whole child” approach, as we will focus on:
What we are proposing to do – The Whole Child
We recognise that learning takes place in a specific context. There are numerous factors that shape learning and educational outcomes beyond the classroom and the academic/ vocational curriculum.
We aim to ensure that our Alternative Provision provides support for the whole child. This will include:
- A focus on attendance – with outreach strategies in place that will ensure that we improve attendance as a pre-requisite for improved learning
- Multicultural competency training for all – teachers, support staff and students. This will provide the foundations within our school that will frame and strengthen our commitment to citizenship and reinforce our distinctiveness as a school
- Special educational needs and disability – we recognise that many young people that we support will have SEND needs and we will ensure that we will develop a SEND-supportive culture across the school, through effective staff training and the involvement of relevant specialist practitioners
- Motivational deficits – we know that there are a range of factors that undermine motivation and we aim to develop a culture in which learning is celebrated, achievements are acknowledged and the wider community as well as family can be harnessed to play a part in the development of a culture of achievement.
- Encouragement of excellence – equally we know how important it is to provide stimulus, challenge and opportunity to children who are excelling – whether displaying academic or intellectual ‘gifts’ or demonstrating ‘talents’ in other areas of activity and learning. We will be clear about the culture, activities, pace, approaches to learning, support and resources required to encourage students who are performing at high levels.
- The family context – In the context of the 2018 review on vulnerable children in social care in England, we recognise that poverty, exclusion, racism and weak familial support networks (of many forms) can play a very real part in framing low expectations, undermining confidence and affecting behaviour. Our network of learning mentors and strong pastoral support programme will provide the highly personalised support needed to fully understand a young person’s needs.
- Safeguarding – In line with the 2018 DfE’s statutory guidance for Keeping Children Safe in Education, amongst other things, we will:
- Ensure that our school has more than one emergency contact number for pupils
- Ensure that safeguarding and welfare concerns are taken into account when restraint is used on children with SEND
- Our school will have its own child protection policy that reflects our local circumstances
Through our consultation work with Manchester City Council and other Manchester supplementary schools, we recognise the need to expand our ideas around safeguarding to include all signs of exploitation such as gangs, drugs and sex trafficking. Using our broad network of mentors, we will support families with identifying and effectively dealing with these signs exploitation because we regard them as significant pre-cursors to radicalisation.
What we are proposing to do – The Curriculum
The curriculum will deliver all the key requirements that any parent or commissioner would expect to see:
- Key Stage 3, 4 – English – to GCSE
- Key Stage 3, 4 – Mathematics – to GCSE
- Key Stage 3, 4 – Sciences – Combined and Separate – to GCSE
- Key Stage 3, 4 – ICT – to GCSE
- Key Stage 3, 4 – Citizenship – to GCSE
- In line with our commitment to social justice and communitarian principles, we aim to base our pedagogy on the African Philosophy of Education, Ubuntu.
- Vocational subjects – Sports and Leisure – Level 2
- Vocational subjects – Health and Social Care – Level 2
- Vocational subjects – Youth and Community – Level 2
- Vocational subjects – Education Studies and Teaching – Level 2
- Vocational subjects – Arts/Creative subjects – Level 2
Beyond the core curriculum and to support the development of independent and critical learning skills, we also aim to offer access to the accredited Extended Project Qualification. This qualification will enable our learners to design and grow project-based approaches to learning that can achieve cross-cutting and applied learning outcomes, whilst encouraging creativity and participation.
Our teaching and learning will explore the following question:
Can we prepare our children effectively for the life challenges they face?
Answer: We place an understanding of communitarianism and social justice for all children and young people (irrespective of background) at the heart of our learning as a way of addressing this question.
We will offer:
- Apprenticeship opportunities through our links with University of Manchester’s The Works
- Access to our wide range of learning mentors
- Access to work placements through our social enterprises
- Access to cultural and sports provisions through our community and cultural partners
Children and young people will:
- Achieve at Level 2
- Be able to apply learning in a range of settings
- Build up a significant body of experience in local community and commercial environments, building links with civil society and the wider labour market
- Develop an understanding of how the local and the global connect – building awareness and connections with relevant global networks and institutions
- Increase their chances of social mobility by being able to use ancestral and local heritages to their advantage in practical day-to-day settings
Download a paper version of our information, here.