The Hastings Academy news

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Are you an aspiring teacher looking to be trained in a Sussex based academy? Look no further. The University of Brighton Academies Trust ‘Train to Teach’ programmes allow you to train here, at The Hastings Academy – an academy which nurtures within our community with aspiration, self-worth, courage, a respect for learning, ​the drive for a successful personal and collective future and the desire for all to achieve and prosper. Being a trainee here, you will spend most of your 1-year course in our classrooms putting theory into practice. You’ll take on challenges headfirst and be in amongst the action, gaining confidence-boosting experience and most importantly reassurance in your career choice as a teacher. Depending on which route you choose, you could receive a Postgraduate Certificate in Education (PGCE) and Qualified Teacher Status (QTS) all whilst being provided with personalised support from our highly experienced teachers and tutors. Developing your teaching knowledge, you will also attend training sessions at the University of Brighton, rated by Ofsted as an outstanding provider of initial teacher training.

Do you want to improve the holistic outcomes for all learners by providing fairness of opportunity in an environment of respect, whilst breaking down any barriers to learning, enabling everyone succeed? By engaging and impacting each other and young lives, we are the academy to kickstart your career in teaching. Here at The Hastings Academy, we aspire to empower all staff to teach engaging, stimulating lessons that take risks for all children have the same life chances as everyone, regardless of their starting point. You will develop in a professional environment by being a part of delivering a personalised curriculum which is designed to offer different pathways to success.​ You will raise aspirations and develop a thirst for challenge through a curriculum which promotes confidence and self-belief to succeed.

There is a variety of choice when it comes to choosing a subject of expertise from Art & Design, Sciences, English, Geography to Modern Languages and Dance. Stuck for choice? There are generous tax-free bursaries and scholarships up to £26,000 available for certain subjects.

Take your first step into the education sector today and discover your options here, where you can apply, but also find out more about bursary and scholarship eligibility. Help deliver excellence to children’s education.

Train to Teach in: Art & Design | Biology | Chemistry | Dance | English | Geography | Mathematics | Modern Languages | Physics


On Thursday 7 October we held our first in-person Open Evening for prospective parents, carers and children since 2019. It was fantastic to interact with our potential newcomers and showcase our brilliant facilities, ensuring all made the most out of what is to come in their secondary school journeys next year.

To inform children and their families that we strive for every child to succeed, the evening began by our principal, Hilary Morawska, delivering a very warm welcome into the Academy. She was accompanied by two of our year 7 pupils and a selection of senior pupils who presented their own speeches about their personal experiences and what they love about school life at The Hastings Academy. After introductory talks, prospective families were able to explore the grounds where we held a market stall scenario in the Atrium which included staff and resources from our Forest School, SuperStitch – our local school uniform provider – our Pastoral team and Play Sport who are the external company who deal with our sports facilities’ bookings. The canteen also provided samples of the type of school meals we provide weekly. On route, Forest School was open for indulgent hot chocolates and s’mores which could be enjoyed whilst discovering the events situated in each department.

Our senior pupils were on hand to meet and greet parents, who answered prospective families’ questions and directed them to their desired subject area. Science was certainly the main attraction of the evening, as year 6 pupils could get in amongst live dissections as well as getting heated in fire-based practicals. In music, our pupils played their beloved instruments and gave children an insight as to what studying music is like here at the Academy but were also wonderful at showing those in awe of their talents how to use them.

As a generic fun activity for the evening, all subjects came together to deliver a treasure hunt for the year 6 children. They were set the task of answering a set number of questions as they moved from one department to the next to be in with the chance of winning an Amazon voucher. It was a joy to watch, and we loved seeing everyone’s eagerness to win. We certainly don’t do things half-heartedly!

We would like to take this opportunity to thank those who came along to our Open Evening. We hope you felt informed, encouraged, but most of all, excited for your child’s journey to begin here next year. We can’t wait for you to join us.

If you were unable to make it, don’t worry! We have bookable Open Mornings on Wednesday 13 and Thursday 14 October at 9:30 – 11:00am. This is a great opportunity for you to see us in action during the school day whilst being able to ask questions to a senior member of management. To register for an Open Morning, please book here.

Alternatively, you can apply for a place at The Hastings Academy today. For any more information about our academy, you can view our Prospectus now.

Remember, the deadline for applications is 31 October 2021.

We would like to wish you the very best for this year and we look forward to welcoming you in 2022.

FREE online self-harm session for parents and carers of a young person engaged in or at risk of engaging in self-harming behaviour. Presented by the Charlie Waller Memorial Trust, This webinar is available to parents and carers across East Sussex, West Sussex, and Brighton & Hove.

For more information, see here: SelfharmPCSessionfinal.pdf

In the last year, ‘self-generated’ child sexual abuse imagery has increased by 77% and is a third of all child sexual abuse material identified and removed from the internet. These included images of girls aged 11 to 13 whose abuse had been recorded via a webcam in a domestic setting.
To help prevent the creation of this type of abusive imagery, a campaign has been launched by the Internet Watch Foundation (IWF) backed by the Home Office and Microsoft. It aims to help raise awareness among parents and carers of young teens about this type of criminality, empower and educate girls aged 11 to 13+ to spot the techniques used by sexual predators and give them the knowledge to ‘Block, Report, Tell’ someone they trust.
This is a national campaign, running from 21 April for six weeks. You can find out more on the IWF website, as well as specific sites for parents and young people.

NSPCC have launched a dedicated helpline for children and young people who have experienced sexual harassment or abuse at school, and for worried adults and professionals that need support and guidance.


The dedicated helpline offers support to:

  • all children and young people making current and non-recent disclosures of sexual harassment or abuse on school grounds within school time, and incidents linked to school in any capacity
  • any children or young people who want to talk about being involved or witnessing any incidents
  • any adults who have experienced non-recent abuse
  • parents and carers who have any concerns about their own or other children
  • professionals who work in schools and need support in this or related issues.

Anyone who gets in touch through this dedicated helpline will also be signposted to other relevant support services available, including Childline - which provides ongoing support and counselling to children and young people.


Click here for more information: 

Trust news

Our Secondary 'Train to Teach' applications for September 2022 are now OPEN. 

Are you an aspiring teacher looking to be trained in a Sussex based academy? Look no further. Our ‘Train to Teach’ programmes will offer you a school-led route into teaching over the course of 1 year. Being a trainee, you will spend time in the classroom putting theory into practice. You’ll take on challenges headfirst and be in amongst the action, gaining confidence-boosting experience and most importantly reassurance in your career choice as a teacher. Developing your teaching knowledge, you will also attend training sessions at the University of Brighton, rated by Ofsted as an outstanding provider of initial teacher training. Then, depending on which route you choose, you will receive a Post Graduate Certificate in Education (PGCE) and Qualified Teacher Status (QTS) all whilst being provided with personalised support from highly experienced teachers and tutors. 

Our ‘Train to Teach’ programmes are offered in all 3 of our secondary academies: 

The Hastings Academy 

The St Leonards Academy 

The Burgess Hill Academy  

There are many different secondary subjects that you can train in from Biology, Physics, Maths to Geography and Dance. 

Teaching bursaries or scholarships are also available for those eligible when training to teach. These are tax-free amounts of money you receive to train in certain subjects. 

To find out more about our Train to Teach programmes and to apply, click here and take your first step into a new and rewarding career! 

We are delighted to share that following a 2-day inspection from Ofsted at two of our academies in October, West St Leonards have maintained their ‘Good’ status, and Lindfield Primary have become ‘Outstanding’! Both academies have gone above and beyond to ensure Ofsted recognised how fantastic they are in a very short amount of time, reflecting an admirable result. The outcomes of these inspections certainly have mirrored our ambitions as a partnership with our academies to deliver nothing but excellence to the children across Sussex.

Lindfield’s Ofsted report stated that “pupils flourish at this exceptional school” whilst “values of teamwork, enthusiasm, celebration, perseverance, success, independence and respect are evident at every turn” further emphasising that “the school’s culture is highly inclusive. Pupils talk maturely about how they celebrate difference and diversity”. When asked about the achievement, Marcus Still, Principal of Lindfield Primary Academy said: “We are thrilled to receive this judgement from Ofsted. We are very proud of our children for being such stars, our staff for being so committed and our community in supporting the Academy over the years!’”.

West St Leonards report celebrates the schools aspirations for pupils to succeed whilst understanding that “supporting pupils’ social and emotional development is vitally important”. It is also underlined that all pupils feel equal – “teachers make them work hard but are always available if they have problems” which includes children with special educational needs and/or disabilities. Those who do attend the specially resourced provision at the academy, are provided the best care in a “supportive environment”. Dominic O’ Regan, Principal of West St Leonards Academy expressed his gratitude following the report saying, “I wish to thank you, parents, and carers for your support; the University of Brighton Academies Trust staff; Trustees and the Local Federated board members; the dedicated and talented staff who make a difference every day and finally the children– they work incredibly hard and are a credit to us all. I am proud of each and every one. Well done”.

We are incredibly proud of you all – your hard work, dedication and enthusiasm has been recognised to the status it deserves to be. Congratulations!


September and October are always very anticipated, busy times of the year for our academies. Not only is it the beginning of the academic year, but it is also the run up to their Open Events. Being the first in person interaction with prospective families since the start of the pandemic, this year’s comeback seemed to feel more important than ever. The events were designed to be more engaging, informative but most importantly, inspiring with academies sharing their enthusiasm with year 6’s for their new journeys to begin next year.  

Our secondary academies held their Open Evenings on the 5 and 7 October, holding their Open Mornings the following week. They all received fantastic feedback across their social media which praised the schools in more ways than one about the students, the teachers, and their facilities. Each department undoubtedly succeeded in their specialisms, showcasing the very best of what each academy has to offer those joining them in September 2022.

A governor who visited one of our academies Open Mornings tweeted:

Thank you to all the staff and students who spared their time for me this morning. Inspiring seeing so much focussed and productive learning in action”.

Although Open Events have ended for our secondary academies, as one door closes another door opens. Our primary academies are welcoming children and their families into their potential new school beginning in October through to January 2022. When choosing our academies, parents are securing a place for their child to have an outstanding learning experience and our Open Days are here to stage exactly that. We are looking forward to seeing your Open Event successes and we would like to wish you all the very best of luck.

To all our academies - your time, effort, and dedication put into these events are certainly worthwhile and it is highly valued across the Trust and our communities. Thank you for all that you do.

The University of Brighton Academies Trust are pleased with the GCSE results achieved by the year 11 students across their 3 secondary academies this year.

The St Leonards Academy and The Hastings Academy’s average GCSE scores over 8 subjects (progress 8) saw an improvement from the previous year. The English Baccalaureate results at The St Leonards Academy also surpassed those from 2020.

Across The St Leonards Academy, The Hastings Academy and The Burgess Hill Academy, the English and Maths results saw an overall increase in attainment levels (grade 5 and above).

Jon Francies, principal at The St Leonards Academy said: “The St Leonards Academy is very proud of the class of 2021. They have responded to the unprecedented challenges set for them over the past year and worked so hard to achieve their GCSE results.

“Staff are delighted with the success of our students and we wish them well for the next stage of their education. We look forward to seeing them again in the autumn to celebrate their success.

Hilary Morawska, principal at The Hastings Academy said: "I would like to thank The Hastings Academy staff for their relentless focus and constant support to secure only the best for their students.

"I would also extend my thanks to our parents and carers who have supported the academy and worked with us to the benefit of their children. And lastly, but most importantly, to the students themselves, who listened to and responded to our teaching, were a brilliant year group and great ambassadors for the academy. On behalf of all who have worked with our Year 11 students, we wish them every good fortune, health and happiness as they embark on the next stage of their learning journey.

Dylan Davies, Executive Director of School Improvement, University of Brighton Academies Trust, said of the results: “In the wake of a challenging year, I am so proud of the resilience shown by our staff and students. These results show the well-deserved outcomes of hard work and dedication of students and staff throughout our academies, and I look forward to seeing how these results will strengthen even further for the new year 11, upon their return to our academies in September.”


The University of Brighton Academies Trust are delighted to announce that Robsack Wood Primary Academy have been awarded a Primary School Quality Mark, led by the University of Hertfordshire, School of Education in collaboration with the Primary Science Teaching Trust.

The Primary School Quality Mark programme ensures effective leadership of science, enables schools to work together to share good practice and is supported by professional development led by local experts. It encourages teacher autonomy and innovation while at the same time offering a clear framework for development in science subject leadership, teaching and learning. Schools that achieve PSQM demonstrate commitment and expertise in science leadership, teaching and learning.

In April 2021, 334 Primary Science Quality Marks have been awarded to infant, junior, primary, middle and special schools to celebrate their commitment to excellence in science teaching and learning.  So far, since its national launch in 2010, over 4000 schools across the UK have achieved a prestigious Primary Science Quality Mark. 

When asked about this great achievement, Dylan Davies, Executive Director of School Improvement at the University of Brighton Academies Trust, said: “Well done to all staff and colleagues at Robsack Wood Primary Academy. A clear validation of the academy's continued work to provide the best possible curriculum for all its pupils.”

Associate Professor Jane Turner, PSQM National Director expressed: “There was never a more important time for primary children to have a high-quality science education. The COVID-19 pandemic has made everyone aware of the impact of science on our daily lives.  Primary schools have an important role to ensure that children understand how science works and keeps us healthy and safe. Schools that have achieved a Primary Science Quality Mark have demonstrated a significant commitment to science teaching and learning, even at this challenging time for schools.  The profile and quality of science in each awarded school is very high. Children are engaging with great science both in and outside the classroom, developing positive attitudes towards science as well as secure scientific understanding and skills. Science subject leaders, their colleagues, head teachers, children, parents and governors should be very proud.”


Dates for the diary