Aims of Sutton House curriculum:

  • To prepare SHA students for further education and future employment, giving them ‘Cultural Capital’
  • To develop their employability, as well as their like skills, to ensure they maximise their independence as they move into adulthood
  • For all students to be entered for GCSE English Language and Mathematics
  • For all students to be able to take at least 5 Level 1/2 qualifications by the end of Year 11
  • To support pupils to meet their EHCP targets, through a broad Personal Development programme, to develop social skills, resilience and team building skills to support their personal growth.


Trauma and Mental Health Informed Approach

At Sutton House Academy we support pupils who suffer with trauma or mental health problems and whose resulting behaviour acts as a barrier to learning. Wellbeing of all is of the highest priority and to support pupils to develop positive mental health and resilience we aim to:

  1. support children to make sense of their experience(s)
  2. find ways to manage their emotions and feelings
  3. create an environment of safety, connection and compassion
  4. build a school network of strong, positive, supportive relationships
  5. ensure children maintain the capacity to learn, despite difficult events that may occur

We pursue this aim by using PACE as a way of thinking, feeling, communicating and behaving to support pupils to build relationships and feel safe at our school. PACE stands for:

  • Playfulness – using a light-hearted, reassuring tone in day to day interactions.
  • Acceptance – accepting the feelings, thoughts and internal struggles that are underneath a pupil’s outward behaviour. It is not about accepting the behaviour itself but helping to teach the pupil to not feel ashamed by their inner turmoil.
  • Curiosity – remaining curious without judgement to support pupils to put a name to their emotions and thoughts.
  • Empathy – being emotionally available to pupils during times of difficulty to show them they are not alone and adults are strong enough to support them both through it.

This approach is embedded across the pupils’ school day. It is further strengthened by a strong RSHE and Personal Wellbeing curriculum offer that empowers all pupils to create positive change for their future.

We also offer targeted strategies to support individual needs such as counselling and SALT (Speech and Language Therapy). Pupils can be referred to more specialist services such as the Educational Psychologist, CAMHS (Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service) and Occupational Therapy after a discussion with our Inclusion and SEND Manager.  

All staff have received specialised training on Trauma and Mental Health; we have a Designated Mental Health Lead as well as two Mental Health First Aiders. Our processes reflect a trauma-informed approach and our rewards and sanctions are both developmentally and trauma-informed. We have high expectations of behaviour for all, however we do not operate a ‘zero tolerance’ or ‘one size fits all’ approach to distressed behaviour and will always look at addressing the cause for the behaviour first and foremost.

Should you wish to discuss anything related to the curriculum or find out more please email