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Here at Sidestrand Hall, we shape our supportive and purposeful school culture around the unique Phase Model. Within this structure we educate pupils from primary Year 4 through to Year 14 and adulthood. Our Phase model ensures optimal pastoral care and seamless transitions for every pupil across their school years.

Sidestrand prides itself on how well pupils are known and cared for. The young people who move through the phases trust and rely on the excellent pastoral team at Sidestrand, and are all comfortable in the knowledge they have key people who will understand, listen to and guide them. Each phase is very much a community of tutor  groups – families that work tirelessly to support and challenge one another to develop into rounded, independent young people and adults.

Each Phase understands the needs of every young person and through their dynamic curriculums, tutor time activities and house competitions, provide a vast array of opportunities to enrich and extend the boundaries of learning. In the Lower Phase, pupils become swimmers, cross country runners and theatre performers; the Dragonfly Phase offers pupils trips to all corners of the county and country; the middle phase sees pupils take on greater leadership challenges and responsibilities, whilst the Upper Phase prepares young people for life outside Sidestrand Hall, and the demands of adult life and work.

We hope you enjoy meeting the wonderful staff from each of the phases. By clicking on the Read more buttons for each phase below, you will learn more about their inspirations, likes and aspirations and, in turn, recognise how much they bring to school and offer the young people at Sidestrand.

Dragonfly Phase

Dragonfly phase provides children with the opportunity to experience a broad curriculum in a more class based environment. It covers three phases and for some of the younger pupils provides them with the opportunity to build positive experiences within a school setting before moving into the Lower school phase. For some of our more complex needs children Dragonfly Phase can provide a bespoke class based curriculum with a higher pupil staff ratio, turning learning into a fun based experience with an aim of helping children to fulfil their potential and level of independence.

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Lower Phase

In Lower Phase we encourage pupils to be kind, considerate and respectful to everyone. Staff work together to support the journey the pupils take and to ensure a smooth transition between classes. We strive to teach independent skills from the beginning as well as challenging the pupils to be their best self.

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Middle Phase

From Year 8 through to Year 10, there is an expectation that students will move away from a static timetable with their class tutor, to attend lessons with specialised subject teachers in different locations. Therefore, during the Middle Phase we aim to foster independent, caring learners, who are confident when faced with the challenges of becoming young adults and the demands of a broader curriculum.

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Upper Phase

In Year 11 students move into the Upper Phase of the school. From here they will either leave to continue education at college or move on to Sidestrand Hall School Sixth Form, which has a separate building onsite.

The Upper Phase is a period for consolidation, thinking about the future and building the skills and confidence for moving on. Preparation for Adulthood is the focus of our Phase.

We want our students to feel ready for their next steps at college or in the workplace. They are able to speak up for themselves and recognise their own interests, strengths and areas for development. We want them to know how to work independently and how to seek out help and support when they need it.

Everyone is different but we expect everyone to contribute to our strong, kind, calm community based on respect.

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Behaviour 4 Learning

We have a strong ethos of positive behavioural support and we look to reward whenever possible any aspect of school life, and ELM is central to this. It is a place where pupils will find a range of reward activities – electronic, art/craft, puzzles, reading, games, pool. When a negative incident has taken place we may need to work supportively with the pupil(s) involved to carry out an educational consequence, Restorative Justice or to complete work. For this we have multiple work spaces where pupils may come for periods of time to reflect and work on what caused the incident to arise. This is always from a supportive point of view with the aim of the young person being able to reflect upon what has happened, restore relationships and develop strategies to reduce the likelihood of the incident being repeated.


ELM is the Behaviour and Pastoral Support Hub for Sidestrand Hall School. Its primary function is to provide a safe and supportive place for pupils to come to at any point. It provides a restorative space for educational consequences to take place as well as rewards. We strongly encourage our young people to discuss any issues which may be affecting them; be that educational, friendships or home and we have an open door policy should anyone wish to talk about any issue they may be facing in a safe and secure environment

Willow Class

Willow Class is an offshoot from ELM and acts as a SEMH Nurture base for pupils who find elements of schooling particularly challenging. It’s a form base with pupils accessing the full curriculum for their age, but with the safety net that they can return to Willow at any point should they be struggling in their class/lessons or free time, reset before then returning back to their lesson/activity. The focus is for pupils to recognise their emotional and behavioural states and manage these themselves prior to any escalation and therefore avoid significant incidents. The pupils work initially to recognise their varying emotional zones and from there develop strategies to support them at each stage. Strategies we use include Zones of Regulation and/or The 5 Points Scales.