The Ark St Alban’s Academy Church of England Mission

The original St Alban’s School was founded in 1871 by the Pollock brothers, with a Christian mission to meet the educational needs of young people living in the centre of the city.  This mission continues to the present day.

We are proud of the academy’s inclusive Church of England ethos and its multi-faith intake.  We have strong partnerships with other faith communities, especially with the Birmingham Central Mosque which is represented on our Governing Body and strongly supports the faith ethos of the academy.

Christian, Muslim, Sikh and Hindu parents and those of other faiths or none send their children to Ark St Alban’s because of its high expectations and good discipline founded on strong moral and religious principles and because they recognise the value of children being encouraged and supported in their faiths.

The staff and governors of Ark St Alban’s Academy believe in standing up for what is right in our community.

As a Church of England academy, our Christian principles inform our actions and beliefs, giving us confidence in defining and communicating what we mean by “right” and “good” and “better”.

 

Our statement of moral purpose and mission statement is:

We are here to challenge every individual to make the most of their God given talents.

That we “challenge” everyone is the foundation of our high expectations.

The inclusion of “every individual” reflects our belief in the equal importance of every student and our commitment to developing the full potential of our colleagues as well as our students.

“Making the most of” our talents drives our pursuit of excellence in all things.

We believe that talents are “God given”, for a higher purpose.  Making the most of our talents means using them and developing them to the full, to help others as well as ourselves, in the interest of creating a better world.

 

The Ark St Alban's Academy Values

We continually strive to act with disciplineintegrity and belief.

We value our right to learn, our teachers’ right to teach and our collective responsibility to contribute to our community.

We are honest and fair. We are reliable and do what we say we will. We do the right thing, because it is right, not because someone is watching or because we want to be rewarded.

We believe in ourselves, our purpose and the work we are here to do. This belief drives our effort and action. It sustains us when things are hard.

 

The Ark St Alban's Academy Pillars

Our mission and values are built on the pillars of our inclusive Christian ethos and the underlying principles of the Ark network.

High expectations

We have the highest expectations of our students, exactly as if they were our own children. We expect them to go to university or pursue the career of their choice, succeed there and then lead fulfilling lives that make them happy and allow them to contribute back to the community.

We believe that all children can - and will - achieve, we do everything we can to make sure that they reach their goal. We act with integrity and discipline to challenge all members of our learning community to make the most of their God given talents, maximising their contribution to society and making the world a better place for us all.

Excellent teaching

We believe academic ability is malleable and that, with the right support and help, all our children have enough ability to achieve our curriculum objectives and go on to university or the career of their choice. Our classroom culture must therefore attest to this belief.

In each of our classrooms, we are individually responsible for making sure that each and every one of our students masters the objectives of our lessons and programmes of study. We must therefore plan for - and insist on - academically rigorous thought, speech and writing.

We are collectively responsible and collectively able to get all our students to proficiency. That means our work is interdependent. We must therefore plan and enact our provision and interventions, together.

Through this work we must plant motivation and grow it where it had not been before.

Exemplary behaviour

We want all our students to enjoy school and feel proud to be part of it.

Our academy is a purposeful place, characterised by a calm and orderly environment, where teachers can focus on teaching and students on learning. We value our students’ right to learn, our teachers’ right to teach and our collective responsibility to contribute to our community.

Effective management and clear and consistent
routines ensure that we maximise time for learning. We expect students to be self-disciplined, self-regulating and do the right thing, because it is right, not because someone is watching. This is achieved through clear routines and consistent communication of high expectations.

We believe in ourselves, our purpose and the work we are here to do. This belief drives our effort and action.  It sustains us when things are hard.

We are collectively responsible and collectively able to ensure this.

Depth for breadth

We prioritise depth for breadth. All pupils secure firm foundations in English and mathematics and this underpins excellence in other subject disciplines. Our curriculum is rigorous and knowledge-led with students practising and then mastering key learning before moving on.

Regular assessments and interventions are structured to ensure that pupils are supported to build upon their strengths and overcome their challenges.  From the point of entry, we work with our students intensively to support the development of reading ability and literacy.

Our student study a broad range of subjects at Key Stages 3 and 4.  At Sixth Form we offer both academic and professional pathways, whilst continually supporting students through high quality careers guidance.

Knowing every child

Our students, in their rich diversity, working together in harmony, are an inspiration and source of hope for the future.  We value this diversity and we are committed to inclusion. We work hard to ensure that each child is known well by all their teachers and in turn, know and express themselves with authenticity and confidence.

We explicitly develop the character and habits which support students’ academic and personal development. The habits they practise will mean that our students live an examined life, sticking to their principles, forming strong personal relationships, making good choices for themselves and others and working hard to see those choices through.

We value students’ wider experiences and provide access to a diverse range of high quality pathways and enrichment programmes.

We build positive relationships with students and their families through a commitment to learning. We create a welcoming, caring and supportive culture where children are safe and maintain excellent behaviour.  At the same time, we foster the learning habits that underpin academic success, enabling them to engage in study at the highest level.

Always learning

We believe that there is a core of knowledge for high efficacy teaching and learning that is sophisticated, extensive and complex. It has not all been part of our professional education. We must therefore constantly be learning from it, adding to it and teaching each other about it.

All teachers have access to high quality professional development which supports progression at all stages of their career. Teachers are supported to develop through weekly coaching, collaborative planning meetings, training days and a highly effective regional and network professional development offer.

We consider feedback to be a gift. We believe that reflection and peer observation play vital roles in identifying how we can improve and embrace the challenges and opportunities that come with feedback.

We are motivated by a shared belief that the families we serve benefit when we challenge ourselves and each other.

Serving our community

As a part of the Church of England we encourage and challenge each other to grow in their own faith or belief. We are driven by an inclusive Christian mission that challenges everyone to make the most of their God given talents.

We believe that to lead is to serve and that, through serving our community, our students can become inspirational leaders of change in our city and the world.

Our mission extends not only to our students and their parents but also to those who live and work in the area we serve. We welcome our community with open hearts and offer our building and facilities to the community as a space where they can meet, learn and work together.