Principal's welcome

Andrew Moncur

Principal, John Smeaton Academy

I am delighted to welcome you to our website for John Smeaton Academy. Our school website provides useful information for students, parents/carers and our community to access and gives a sense of the truly exceptional transformation that we embarked upon on 1 September 2021 when we joined The GORSE Academies Trust. When we did so the Ofsted ratings of previous years became formally a part of the past and our new, fresh-start future began, a future in which the students and community of John Smeaton Academy will work together in partnership to ensure our students achieve outcomes aligned with their top performing peers nationally. These outcomes will, in turn, give them access to progress into their chosen, high-quality destinations in Education, Employment and further Training (EET) and ultimately to go on to study in some of the best universities in the world.

At the heart of all that what we do is our core values. Through the values of: Kindness, Ambition, Dedication and Respect, our students, their parents/ carers and our colleagues are committed to the mission of the academy; one where we together ensure that all young people ‘Secure the Gift of Choice’ regardless of socio-economic background.

John Smeaton Academy aspires for all young people to leave their time with us having secured ‘The Gift of Choice’. Our key drivers that enable us to achieve this are centred around five key areas within the curriculum. Our curriculum is designed to instil exceptional standards, equipping our students with ambitious standards. It is designed to remove barriers so our students can maximise progress and access appropriate challenge, build resilience by ensuring that students are routinely exposed to challenging and difficult concepts and ideas (the Purple Zone). It is carefully crafted so that students can apply the knowledge they have acquired to different and challenging contexts and is designed to deliver awe and wonder. This is fundamental to promote creativity in the classroom; to inspire and engage our students so that they develop a passion and enthusiasm for learning not just in the classroom, but beyond. It develops the skills necessary to fulfil individual potential; developing independence and autonomy so that students are not over reliant on the support of others, including their teachers.

The academy is a truly exceptional place for students to study and for colleagues to work. We take pride in making decisions that are needs based and context specific, doing the right thing at the right time. Whether you are accessing our website as a prospective student, a parent/carer or a prospective colleague I hope you find this information useful.

I encourage you to join us for one of our annual Open Events or arrange a visit to look around our academy and see for yourself our exceptional school which enables all students to ‘Secure the Gift of Choice’.