Preparing our children to be successful in the modern world.
To do this best, we believe that schools should be tightly integrated into the community, and be focused on creating academically rigorous, authentic experiences that bring our children closer to this goal.
In the USA, High Tech High and Expeditionary Learning schools have been practicing this for over two decades to astounding success. Their children are articulate and confident, and possess not only deep subject knowledge, but the wider skills and competencies needed to be successful in the 21st century.
Our school is based on the following Design Principles:
- we express who we are through our work
- we forge our own pathways to career, University and life readiness
- we have ownership of our own progress and learning
Connect with the world
- we learn naturally across subjects from enquiry through to presentation to authentic audiences
- we create meaningful relationships beyond the classroom
- we engage in relevant work that matters
A common mission
- we form genuine communities with shared goals
- we have collaborative accountability
- we take real risks to achieve more
- we are ‘crew’ not passengers
Teachers are learners
- we learn through the design process
- we have ownership of the curriculum
- we are accountable to our stakeholders
Language is our culture
- we actively refer to our character values each day, using them as a framework for our conduct, they are not just words on walls.
- we realise our values through our Habits of Work and Learning
- we use sign language and common phrases when appropriate to express our thoughts, feelings and sense of community
These design principles act as a guide and big picture for our teaching and learning practices, and are adapted from HTH, which in turn came from the New Urban High School Project, facilitated by Big Picture Learning
What does this look like in reality?
We use the EL Education Core Practices to guide our own practice and have adapted this to our UK context.
Our prospectus for XP presents our schools in terms of key messages for prospective parents.
How do we embed our strategic vision through our schools?
Our strategic vision is secured through our Trust members being custodians of our Design Principles. Our Board of Directors support and challenge our school by monitoring and reviewing Key Performance Indicators that emerge from our Design Principles. These KPIs are reported on through our Local Governing Committees forming working groups made up of stakeholders, including students when appropriate.
This distributed leadership enables all our stakeholders to use their voice to support and challenge the development of our schools.