Spencer Spotlight – April 2022

A Message from our CEO

As we approach Easter, I’d like to take this opportunity to thank all members of our Spencer community for the continued commitment and huge efforts throughout what has been a busy and successful Spring Term. Despite the continued challenges that we have faced as a result of the Covid pandemic, our academies have, without exception, ensured that well-being and high standards of learning and care have been prioritised and delivered. As a result, our children and young people have continued to flourish.

Sincere thanks to our leadership, teaching and educational support teams in our academies, our strong and supportive central trust team and all members of our Local Governing Bodies and Board of Directors.

Well done to our colleagues, children and families at Portland Spencer and Inkersall Spencer Academies on their recent success and deserved recognition following their recent Ofsted inspections. We know just how much hard work it takes, year in and year out, to realise the vision, embed the culture and deliver the quality of learning that our students deserve.

Many of our academies have been fundraising to raise money to support and aid refugees that are displaced, struggling and suffering because of the Russian/Ukrainian conflict. The compassion and support that is being shown for those needing help is humbling, and as many of you enjoy a few days with family and friends, our thoughts and prayers remain with those affected by the troubles, and those fighting for peace.

With my best wishes,



SAT News

Spencer Academies Trust celebrates World Book Days’ 25th Anniversary

Students and staff from across our academies acknowledged World Book Days’ 25th anniversary by dressing up as their favourite characters, baking cakes representing their most treasured books and themed lessons around ‘Reading for pleasure’ as part of the National campaign.

Millside Spencer Academy appoint Sophia Thorne as first Principal

We are delighted to announce the appointment of Sophia Thorne, as the first Principal of the Trust’s newest Primary School Millside Spencer Academy. Based in the heart of East Leake, the academy will cater for the newly developed housing and growing community within the village.

Spencer Superstars Day

On the 13th of May we are asking all of our academies to have there very own ‘Superstars Day’ in support of our Spencer Superstars Charitable Foundation. From none school uniform days to sporting events, we can’t wait to see how our academies acknowledge this day.

Academies Celebrate Red Nose Day

It was great to see so many of our academies fundraising for Red Nose Day last month. Children dressed up in red and put on their Red Noses all in aid of Comic Relief. Well done to everyone involved.

SAT Recruitment Fairs

Last month Spencer Academies Trust held two Recruitment Fairs for Educational Support staff at George Spencer Academy and Chellaston Fields Spencer Academy. It was great to see so many people interested in joining the Trust and starting their journeys within Education. A special thank you to the academies that held the events for us, keep your eyes out for our next events in due course.

Successful Happy, Healthy and High-Performing Primary CPD Event

Our 17 primary academies joined together yesterday during our Primary CPD event to discuss and share expertise within the trust. The theme centred around Happy, Healthy and High-Performing with over 80 sessions delivered by over 100 staff from across our academies.

Spencer Superstars Inaugural Ball

In May we will officially be launching our Spencer Superstars Charitable Foundation with our very first Spring Inaugural Ball. Academy representatives, partners and suppliers will all be in attendance to kick-off the Foundation and raise initial funds to support our students.

New Staff Appointments

Over the last term as a Trust we have appointed additional support staff across our Professional Services and Central Team. We have also made some key appointments across our academies in both teaching and support roles. To all those that have joined us, welcome.

Secondary Snapshot

Long Field Spencer Academy

It has been an exciting term at Long Field Spencer Academy. Their new ‘Motto Together, Enjoy, Achieve’ sums up the term perfectly. The Year 11 results for their mock exams are indicating that they could be in for a bumper set of exam results this year and the afternoon tea for them all after the mock exam period was a nice distraction for all.

Trips have restarted with students going to Zero Latency, Ninja Warrior, an overnight trip to London including the Natural History Museum and there annual trip to Cologne with Year 8 has made a welcome return after a 2 year absence. World Book Day is always a highlight of the Spring term with the staff dressing up.

Special mention to Mr Haggett who dressed up for the day as a giant copy of Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince, replacing Harry’s head with his own. They have continued to take part in, and for a change at Long Field, win a number of competitions.

They had their first attempt at the Schools’ National Biathlon Competition with Miles Willets in Year 8 winning in his category. Now they have mastered the biathlon they have become one of the first comprehensive schools in the country to offer Laser Run, which has proved to be very popular with the students. They just now need to start fencing and show jumping and we will be ready for the modern pentathlon at Paris 2024.

Their 54 clubs continue to be well attended with the Harry Potter model railway groups completing their tunnels and over 60 students attending our new LGBTQ+ group. Special mention to Irina Armitage who runs the Russian Club. Irina is half Ukrainian and half Russian and has been helping students understand the complexities of the war whilst teaching the students key language skills. Careers guidance is going well with 0% NEET confirmed for last year and students in Year 7 beginning their journey with their four Barclays Life Skills sessions.

They now a have scholarship programme in the school for Sport and Performing Arts and the scholarship students enjoyed an inspirational talk from Skeleton Bob Olympian Amelia Coltman. This term they have been preparing for entering the National School in Bloom Competition and have produced a portfolio of 33 different areas for the judges to look at.

There are currently 30 families growing seeds for their vegetable garden and new cut flower garden (ready for their floristry workshops in the Summer). Students continue to enjoy the rewards at Long Field with weekly Tassomai Science, Hegarty Maths, Reading Plus, UNIFROG, English knowledge organisers and Fruity Friday prizes. They have also managed to fit in some charity work, with a fantastic collection of supplies for Ukraine and Comic Relief. A special mention to Longfield P.E teacher Megan Hallam raising just under £500 running the Manchester Marathon for Spencer Superstars.

They have also been collecting Easter Eggs this term which will be delivered to the local children’s hospice. They are looking forward to the Trust ELT meeting on the 28th April at Long Field and students have been hard at work making sure this is going to be a very special visit. Watch this space!


A Note from Fraser

Fraser Mitchell, SAT Director of Secondary Education said, ‘I want to wish a very happy Easter and say a huge thank you to all eight of the secondaries in our Trust.

We’ve had a busy year so far in 2022. We’ve continued to extend our offer for everyone both in and out of the classroom – it’s been great to see school trips and residentials taking place again, in addition to classrooms returning to normal after all the challenges the pandemic placed (and continues to place) on us all. Our Year 11s and sixth formers have been working super-hard preparing for their upcoming examinations. We will continue to go above and beyond to do all that we can to support each and every one of them. Good luck to everyone revising over the holidays and beyond – your academy will be in touch to let you know what support is available.

We have some exciting times ahead. We look forward to celebrating the Trust’s 10th birthday with some in school activity when we return. You’ll hear more about that in the weeks ahead. One place that also has some exciting times at the moment is Long Field Spencer, and I hope you enjoy the focus on them elsewhere in this newsletter.


Primary Focus

Inkersall Spencer Academy awarded Good status at Ofsted inspection

Pupils and teachers at Inkersall Spencer Academy are delighted after being rated Good at its first Ofsted inspection post COVID-19.
Sarah Allison, Principal said: ‘We are so pleased with our recent Good Ofsted rating. Our staff and pupils have worked extremely hard to turn this Academy around over the past few years, whilst also navigating through a global pandemic. We have put a lot of effort into building strong foundations at Inkersall and will continue to build on those. We aim to continue to be a positive and integral part of our community.’

Portland Spencer Academy glowing Ofsted inspection

Pupils and teachers at Portland Spencer Academy are celebrating after receiving a glowing review at its first Ofsted inspection post COVID -19.

Kate Green, Executive Principal of Portland Spencer Academy said, ‘We are so pleased that the work of the staff and children has been recognised, especially considering the impact of the global pandemic. We have continued to ensure that we place a focus on the importance of relationships; on building a love of reading and a thirst for knowledge across the curriculum; and on ensuring our children are happy  – so that they can ASPIRE in all that they do!’

Star Baker

We would like to give a special shout out to Chellaston Fields Spencer Academy’s catering team. They created some delicious love heart biscuits for Valentines Day, well done all!


A few words from Angela

SAT Director of Primary Education, Angela O’Brien OBE. ‘This term has been a busy one for all academies but lots of fun too! We have dressed up for World Book Day, to support the Ukraine crisis and ‘rocked out socks’ for World Down Syndrome Day. School trips have become part of our learning again after lockdown prevented this and the children have loved every minute creating memories.

As always the Spring term is the chance for embedding work and in particular the Year 6 teams have been practising and learning ready for SATs. The pupils have shown amazing resilience and attitudes to revising and attending booster sessions and thank you to all the staff involved in preparing them to have the best chances. Walking around the schools there is a real buzz of learning and much improved environments.

We have been developing our work in regional clusters over the past few weeks and focusing efforts on moderating across year groups. This has been an opportunity to share and challenge each other in a supportive way and to get out and about after being ‘shut away’ for so long. The clusters are now working on exciting joint projects to bring pupils and subject leaders together and to create joint Jubilee Celebrations.

Our Primary Trust joint INSET day in February was a real success and created a platform for many of our talented staff to showcase their work. What a talented group of individuals who stepped up and shared their practice! We also enjoyed listening to Saeed Atcha MBE who delivered an inspirational opening speech which gave us food for thought. Thank you to Kev Lomas for the organisation and the channel hosts who made it run seamlessly.

We have had two very successful OFSTED inspections this term for Portland and Inkersall. Both found the process rigorous but fair and the pupils were a real asset to the academies during the inspection. The hard work over many months/years paid off and it was great that the teams got to see what we see everyday.

Next term will be as busy as ever as we move into assessments, transition and most likely more inspections. We will continue with delivering a broad curriculum, but will also be making our final preparations for the latest addition to the family, Millside Spencer in East Leake. The new Principal, Sophia Thorne, will be joining the team and ensuring we are good to go in September with a new building, team and pupils. Exciting times ahead.



The team would like to share a big thank you to all staff and schools for supporting any of our strands of work, from the GSA SCITT and the Spencer TSH, to the Maths Hub, Research School and Spencer Apprenticeships. We value your support and being able to work in partnership with you – together we have delivered 232.5 days of CPD to 2,260 participants in over 680 schools since September! Have a lovely Easter break!

Tammy, Caroline, Lisa and the SALT Team

Vacancies & Events


For the latest vacancies across our academies and trust please visit: Spencer Academies Trust Careers

Upcoming Events

Events to acknowledge in the upcoming term:
  • Easter Sunday 17th April
  • Eid Ul Fitr Monday 2nd May
  • VE Day Sunday 8th May
  • Spencer Superstars Day Friday13th May
  • Spencer Superstars Inaugural Spring Ball Saturday 28th May