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Trust Aims and Ethos

Our aim is to develop the very highest aspirations in the young people who attend any school belonging to The Mulberry Schools Trust because we believe this enables them to lead successful, happy and fulfilled lives, making a contribution to their own community and to wider British society. Mulberry pupils will be proud of their identity, which includes strong British values as well as a rich and diverse cultural and religious heritage from England, Bangladesh, Somalia, Pakistan, Morocco, Egypt, Europe and Russia.

Every pupil will be given an education that has three key aims:

1.To engender high levels of academic and technical ambition with knowledge of how to learn and how to communicate one’s learning with strong understanding through high quality, confident writing and speaking. Pupils will learn the intellectual skills and technical language for the subjects they study so that they can perform at the highest level. Pupils will be taught how to be independent learners and how to work together to support each other in successful learning;

2.To provide rich personal development (character education) that includes a strong moral, spiritual and social foundation, to foster a highly developed imagination and creativity. Pupils will be taught to think critically and analytically, to be enquiring, thoughtful and questioning and to be open-minded with a strong understanding of the world around them. Pupils will be supported to develop confidence, resilience and security in their abilities and identity and to extend their talents. Pupils will be helped to develop their ‘voice’ and will be provided with a variety of platforms from which they can develop their skills in public speaking and ensure they are confident in making their voices heard in constructive, powerful ways;

3.To enable the development of pupils’ high aspirations and self-determination through opportunities for leadership, engagement with higher education and the professional workplace and experience of different cultures. Pupils will become global ambassadors - for the school, their community and for British society - able to encounter challenge, to negotiate solutions and to make peace and prosperity a realistic prospect for all those with whom they live and work. Pupils will actively work for positive social change.

All schools belonging to the Trust will benefit from what has been achieved in Mulberry School for Girls through understanding the wider world for which we are preparing our pupils, upholding social cohesion and a good social mix as well as the impact of systemic disadvantage on educational achievement and social mobility, working hard to open doors for older students.

Bringing Down Barriers to Success

Those responsible for the schools in The Mulberry Schools Trust have a deep understanding of the issues that face disadvantaged students (of whom there are many in Tower Hamlets and East London) and how to overcome the barriers that poverty and social exclusion create. We also know how to ensure that able pupils, who often fare less well in our schools, achieve according to their real potential. We have a track record in this work as well as in work to support pupils with severe and complex needs.   Pedagogy and practice in inclusion is cutting edge amongst the staff and governors of the school.

For example, knowing that networks of support are essential for young people in their early careers that are often started at school, everything possible is done and will continue to be done to make connections and foster relationships with external partners in higher education, business, industry, the arts and the sciences in support of students in the Mulberry family. Equally destinations for pupils with severe and complex needs are well-planned for and carefully considered in order to ensure their success in transition.

Relatively few young people in the communities that our schools serve gain high-level employment in our local area, which includes the City of London and Canary Wharf. Poverty and over-crowding is high amongst local families. Local young people currently are often consigned to roles that do not bring with them the wealth, power and voice which our local institutions and employers confer on employees from outside of the borough. Youth unemployment is high and there is a local drugs economy along with associated gangs and sexual exploitation of women. Tensions can be high and social harmony is increasingly fractured at the present time while the country comes to terms with increasing immigration and asylum, the war in Syria and anxiety about terrorism: locally, the sense of all this is intense and strains community relations.

What we will provide in schools within The Mulberry Schools Trust will be an enticing and attractive alternative to the independent sector in education and to street life. It will build community cohesion through our extended school provision in the same way that we currently do at Mulberry School for Girls. It will offer the chance for students to develop their own sense of self as a young person, to decide their place in the world and to articulate their power to achieve. It will provide the means by which, through intellectual and applied learning, students will make outstanding educational progress and can access careers at all levels in London, New York and Beijing. It will help young people encounter a holistic view of gender, race and identity which grounds its power in equality, sensitivity and shared control. The schools will model together a world in which there is a ‘partnership of equals’ of women with men, boys with girls - a world where diversity and rich cultural and religious heritages are valued and respected - a world in which voices are heard and power is negotiated.

There is an emphasis on high quality subject teaching supported by high quality support for learning and intervention. Inclusion services will support personal development and there will be excellent pastoral care. Leadership will be strong with high levels of expertise in education supported by knowledgeable, committed and challenging governance.

Mulberry’s corporate and arts partners such as Bank of America, Merrill Lynch, the British Film Institute, the National Theatre, the London Stock Exchange Group, the Donmar Warehouse, the Southbank Centre and others will all contribute extensively to the wider extra-curricular experiences that The Mulberry Schools Trust is able to offer in support of its aims.