The St. Christopher School Academy Trust strives to develop a positive learning community where everyone feels valued and encouraged to achieve their full potential in all aspects of life.
From its opening in 1906, as the first educational provision for pupils with Special Educational Needs in South East Essex, The St. Christopher School has developed to meet the changing demands placed upon it and aims to meet the individual needs of its current pupils.
The school is recognised to meet the needs of children with a range of learning needs, including communication and interaction difficulties, cognition and learning difficulties, Autism and some with social emotional and behavioural difficulties. The St. Christopher School also caters for Key Stage 3 pupils (age range 11-14) and Key Stage 4 pupils (age range 14-16) who have severe Autism and/ or ADHD. Many of our current pupils could be described as having “complex learning difficulties” in that they have a combination of various difficulties. The St. Christopher School also caters for a small number of young people aged 16 – 19 who have Autistic Spectrum Disorders and/or ADHD.
The school was inspected by Ofsted on 8 June 2017 and continues to be ‘Outstanding’.
The report states that “The St. Christopher School is an incredibly happy school. Pupils arrive cheerfully in the morning and are warmly welcomed by staff, who support them exceptionally well. Staff ensure that the learning environment is vibrant and welcoming. Pupils are extremely polite and well mannered.”
For a full copy of the report, click here Ofsted Report July 2017.
On 1 September 2017 the school became part of the SEN Trust Southend Multi-Academy Trust. This is a partnership between The St. Christopher School, Lancaster School, Kingsdown School and St. Nicholas School. This is a formalisation of the partnership which has existed between these four successful special schools in Southend.
For more information about SEN Trust Southend click here
Awards and Achievements
- The school achieved the Learning Outside the Classroom Gold award in October 2016.
- The school achieved the Enhanced Healthy Schools Award in 2014.
- The school became a Stonewall Champion in July 2014, championing diversity and working to eradicate bullying in all its forms.
- From 1 April 2012 The St. Christopher School became an Academy.
- From 2018 The St. Christopher School became the first school in Essex to sign up to the Charter for Employers Who are Positive About Mental Health
Mental Health Accreditation 2017/18
The school took part in the Enhanced Healthy Schools program for Emotional Health and Wellbeing during 2017/18. This was a Southend Borough Council initiative led by Lisa Holloway and had a joint focus on improving staff knowledge and support for our pupils, and also offering practical advice support and activities for our staff to improve their own wellbeing. One of the highlights of the year was Mental Health Week where all classes paired up for social time and to complete activities around promoting good mental health; governors also visited and some of our classes have now incorporated regular social sessions with other groups into their timetable. Our annual film festival took Mental Health as the theme and involved one primary and all secondary groups. All our staff were offered free health checks and we had a very good take up of this offer, with over 75% of staff taking part. Parents were not forgotten – sleep workshops were well attended and these will be offered again in the current school year. A new initiative “The Unravel Room” was set up for parents to socialise and discuss their worries in a safe environment, this is also continuing. In November 2018 we received our Enhanced Healthy School certification at an awards ceremony held at the Tickfield Centre.
In addition The St Christopher School became the first school in Essex to sign up to the Charter for Employers Who are Positive About Mental Health, this demonstrates that as an employer we are mindful of our staffs’ wellbeing and “we recognise that, in the UK, people experiencing mental ill health continue to report stigma and discrimination. We are committed to creating a supportive and open culture, where colleagues are able to talk about mental health. We are also committed to ensuring that our employees feel safe in disclosing any mental health conditions and confident that they will be properly supported and offered reasonable adjustments when required.”