Who We Are

Reshaping the Future

About North Star 180°

Based in the North of Bath, North Star 180° is an all through school (ages 8-16) that caters for pupils with social, emotional and mental health (SEMH) needs. Pupils who have difficulties with their emotional and social development may have limited social skills and find it difficult to make and sustain healthy relationships.

These difficulties may be displayed through the young person becoming withdrawn or isolated, as well as through challenging, disruptive or disturbing behaviour. SEMH can manifest as difficulties relating to problems of mood (anxiety or depression), problems of conduct (oppositional defiance and more severe conduct problems including aggression), self-harm, substance abuse, eating disorders or physical symptoms that are medically unexplained. In addition to this some of pupils may have recognised disorders such as attention deficit disorder (ADD), attention deficit hyperactive disorder (ADHD), attachment disorder, or generalised anxiety disorders.

Our school holds places for 104 pupils. All young people attending North Star 180° must have an Educational Health Care Plan (EHCP) in which the primary need is ‘Social and Emotional Mental Health.’

All new admissions must be referred to NSAT by a Local Authority SEN Department. Individuals must meet the SEN primary need type and also be of appropriate age. Unfortunately, if a child referred to us does not meet this criteria, they have additional needs which cannot be met or if their needs are not compatible with the rest of the cohort or class group we will not be able to offer a place at that time.

Our Values

N

Navigate

S

Success

T

Together

A

Ambition

R

Relevence

Our Vision

 

North Star was born out of a drive to do something different for those who need more.

Formed by the desire to shape futures, North Star emerged. We remain where others may part, equipping young minds to join with their communities.

Forging together the path ahead, travelling alongside.

Our team can bring dreams to fruition.

SEN Methodologies

There is no single, universally recognised methodology adopted in school provision for pupils experiencing social, emotional and mental health difficulties.  In recent times however a number of significant themes have emerged, led by experts in the field.  Academies in the North Star Trust drawn on several of these to form our own unique provision, engaging with and responding to pupil needs. 

Key is understanding children’s experiences and physiology and how this can influence pupil presentation in school.  We know that our pupils have a significant need to feel safe, to learn to trust.  Insecurity and anxiety can lead to an impulse to try to control situations and this will be lessened when pupils feel safe enough to relax and learn. For this reason we offer boundaries and at the same time a highly nurturing environment. 

We focus on keeping to routines and systems, knowing that pupils like to be able to anticipate what will happen next.  Staff calmly carry the expectation that their requests will be met. Pupils are supported by even the smallest indication of unrest being noted and supported.   We look to develop a culture of ‘error’ and ‘not knowing’, promoting the idea that this is a normal part of the learning process. 

We encourage the development of professional, trusting relationships between pupils and staff, knowing this is key to engagement. Staff take positive delight in working with pupils. They understand the importance of letting them know that they are thought about, or ‘held in mind’.  Staff know how to attune to pupils and validate their experiences, listening actively to their verbal and non-verbal communications.  Pupils are helped to work towards solution-focussed, positive outcomes.  Supported reflective spaces are available when needed.

1

Key is understanding children’s experiences and physiology and how this can influence pupil presentation in school. 

2

We focus on keeping to routines and systems, knowing that pupils like to be able to anticipate what will happen next.

3

We encourage the development of professional, trusting relationships between pupils and staff.

How Are We Different?

We value honesty from pupils and positively recognise when responsibility for actions is taken.  This encourages pupil engagement with restorative approaches. We recognised that opportunities for choice, as well as a focus on win/win outcomes improve a pupil’s acknowledgment of responsibility.

Staff in all schools encourage and teach pupils about their own needs.  They are supported in ‘owning’ their Education, Health and Care Plan (EHCP) and knowing the importance of their own voice.  This helps them to take increased responsibility for achieving short-term targets that steer them towards long-term expected outcomes.

Our school environment is predictable, organised and offers pupils reminders and guidance.   It re-enforces reward systems that are used to encourage engagement as well as celebrating achievement.  Praise is noted as being a significant motivator and we work towards all pupils being able to accept this.  Praise is always focussed on effort rather than outcome so as to encourage the idea that with determination, anything can be achieved.

Key to long-lasting and positive engagement is parental involvement and we have systems in place to ensure this happens frequently and positively.  We value the understanding that parents and carers have of their child’s needs and meanwhile look to share any knowledge that we have as professionals. We know that the best outcomes arise from working collaboratively with all those who support a child.

Trust Board Members

Steve Hornsby – Chair/Health and Safety  

Janet Bremner – Vice Chair 

Kaye Palmer-Greene – CEO

Andrew Kandiah  

Adam Matthews 

Hank Cole

Irina Lazar

Mark Saint

Fiona Williams

Tiffini Smith

Meet the Staff

Zoe Napier

Deputy Headteacher & Deputy Designated Safeguarding Lead

Suzy Summers

SENCO & Deputy Designated Safeguarding Lead

Jodie Plummer

Exams Officer and Receptionist

Lorraine Self

Receptionist and Admin Officer

Kirsten Clarke

Teacher, North Star Outreach

Alison Barnes

Teacher, North Star Outreach

Charlotte Wynn

Learning Mentor, North Star Outreach

Samantha Cotter

Teacher, North Star Outreach

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