Please read about our new school in Sawtry and see our engagement survey below
Discovery ensures that all children in our schools access outstanding opportunities within the context of a world class education. We are applying to open Greenlands Primary School as part of our strategy to expand to 30 schools in the region by 2025. In doing so, we are building on an outstanding track record of opening and improving schools to make sure all children can achieve their full potential.
The key principles for all our schools are as follows:
We believe in earned autonomy for all our schools. Discovery schools have their own sense of identity as well as being part of the trust’s supportive and collaborative network. In the first instance, we have identified the following key priorities for Greenlands Primary School:
Our unique teaching and learning strategy, ‘Limitless Learning’, is implemented across all our schools. It is designed to provide a framework for best practice across the five key areas of: environment, feedback, expectations, inclusion and learning journey. Limitless Learning underpins everything in our classrooms: our teaching staff are supported to enable all children to succeed through a high quality and consistent learning experience.
Our primary curriculum is focused on Global Discovery with the key drivers of past, present and future. We have high expectations for all pupils to become responsible and proactive learners; this is the best route by which they will achieve high academic results. We are deeply committed to inclusion for all pupils, including those with SEND and have Outstanding expertise in SEND in the trust via our two special schools.
Learning will be embedded in whole-school, vision-led curriculum themes, lasting for up to a half term. Other schools have adopted the Cornerstones themes, which allows for productive resource sharing whilst allowing significant local flexibility and autonomy for each school.
Our curriculum is both broad and deep, offering a diversity of experience and blended teaching methods to meet all needs. The trust will work with leaders in the new school to develop this curriculum to ensure that it is relevant and rooted in the day-to-day of the new school’s community. As well as excellence in core subjects, our schools give high priority to sport and the arts. In addition to a rich curriculum offer in these areas, Greenlands Primary School will provide extended provision via a range of clubs, activities and out of hours care.
Parents/carers are key partners in their children’s learning. In addition to structured annual reports and parents’ evenings, we will provide frequent informal opportunities to communicate via phone calls, email or face to face. Parents/carers will feel fully incorporated into their children’s learning and the broader life of the school.
Discovery has an exceptional pedigree in staff training, development and retention. The trust is an accredited SCITT and Outstanding ITE provider, having trained over 200 new teachers since 2015. We operate a trust-wide annual plan for recruitment and retention, and HR policies covering issues such as work-life balance. Other policies, such as appraisal policies, are held at school-level, ensuring local autonomy.
The trust employs a Head of Safeguarding and Pupil Wellbeing, and there is a Safeguarding Champion on the trust board. Both will support the new school to establish a culture of safeguarding, underpinned by robust policies and processes, from the start.
Discovery staff have a wealth of experience across governance, finance, estates, HR, safeguarding and ICT. Our central and operational teams support our educational practitioners to deliver the best for our pupils without operational distractions. Because of the expertise and capacity within the central team, Discovery will be able to deploy people and resources flexibly during the pre-opening period to ensure maximum efficiency.
We have previously opened a Free School and are therefore well aware of, and prepared for, the challenges and opportunities this presents. We are committed to a programme of in-depth community consultation to ensure that the new school meets the needs of all stakeholders and is aligned with the local vision for education.
Our trust board brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to all of the trust’s activities. They will commission an Advisory Board for Greenlands Primary School, agreeing a specific scheme of delegation during the pre-opening period. This structure works very well in our existing schools, giving the school operational freedom whilst maintaining strong oversight at each level of governance.
We have extremely robust financial governance procedures in place and are confident in our ability to successfully manage Greenland Primary School’s finances. The financial model submitted alongside our bid demonstrates how we would intend to deliver on our educational vision within the funding envelope provided for the new school.
We are committed to systemic improvement: through our Teaching School Alliance, we have supported more than 40 schools. We have a rich support programme for our own and other schools which encompasses expertise in wellbeing, behaviour and staff development and retention. Our existing strong relationships with MATs and schools across the region will enable us to create a school which is truly at the heart of its local educational, as well as geographic, community.