Welcome to First Base Ipswich Academy

Ethos, Mission and Accountability

The Raedwald Trust (RT) is established to deliver its core purpose devolved by parliament: the advancement of education in the public interest.  Committed to the 7 Principles of Public Life (Selflessness, Integrity, Objectivity, Accountability, Openness, Honesty and Leadership), the Raedwald Trust uses compliance to drive a culture of ethics and probity.  Through this approach, the Raedwald Trust is able to unleash greatness by enabling bold, imaginative and innovative learning and leadership.

Our Trust and Academy Mission and Principles

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Higher Expectations; Higher Aspirations; Higher Achievement

  • Quality: Our Trust is relentlessly focused on improvement and driven by a curriculum led model of planning that allows our young people a new start, new opportunities to succeed.
  • People: Our pupils and their families are at the heart of what we do, driving inspirational bespoke learning pathways.
  • Innovation: We work to innovate within an ever changing society, and fulfill the needs of our individual young people.  Our staff ‘think out of the box’ and instigate radical approaches to learning.
  • Community: Our colleagues and partners share our passion for achieving exceptional outcomes for our young people: we work together to support our young people into being productions members of the communities in which they live.

Our Key Characteristics

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As a Trust, we value individuality, inclusivity and innovation: our core principles are delivered through our key characteristics.  These principles form the basis of our Trust Wide planning.  These are:

  1. Enabling inspirational leadership and management
  2. Delivering high quality learning experiences
  3. Securing safe and energising learning environments
  4. Empowering supportive, skilled and nurturing staff
  5. Forging focused partnerships and collaborations benefiting pupil outcomes

The Raedwald Trust was created with the determination to improve outcomes for children and young people who are unable to access education in mainstream education settings and require personalised, bespoke, education in an alternative setting.  With the needs of our pupils and their families at the centre of our planning, we use our collective knowledge in working with vulnerable learners to deliver exceptional education, every hour of every day.  The Raedwald Trust understands the crucial significance of being open to ideas.

The Raedwald Trust celebrates that its improvement strategy will never be static; rather that it will deliberately and consciously evolve to meet the needs of pupils, and a relentless drive for higher standards.  Transparency, flexibility and reciprocity define our systems.  We know that working as a whole makes us more than the sum of our component parts.

Our intentional and coherent leadership structures secure our growth through strategic objectives rooted in organsational principles of alignment, autonomy and centralisation.  All academies, schools, centres, sites and pathways within the Raedwald Trust operate within the following parameters:

Operating Parameters
Trust-wide and Academy  Centralisation
Vision; Purpose; Principles.  Strategic & Trust Growth Planning; Digital Platforms; HR; Finance; Safeguarding; School Improvement; Pupil Admissions;  Pedagogy
Trust-wide and Academy Alignment
Curriculum; Assessment; PR; External Provision & Transition;  External Partnerships; Standard Operating Principles
Trust-wide and Academy Autonomy
The Raedwald Trust is committed to principles securing collaborative convergence.  As such, the Raedwald Trust delivers any necessary academy autonomies through its Head Teachers Executive Group

The Raedwald Trust wider leadership and governance structures provide;

  • Proactive anticipation and mitigation of Trust ‘break points’, such as scaling up and performance accountability, through effective directional change management systems at Trust level.
  • A coherent, compelling framework for academy improvement.

The Improvement Strategy: 2020-2021

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This improvement strategy sets key focus areas for the Raedwald Trust.   Entering our fifth year of operation, the Raedwald Trust has developed effective habits of joined up working and we continue to be energised by the knowledge that the methods we use to drive our improvement will necessarily develop over time.   Our stability is our unshakable commitment to the achievement of equality of opportunity and exceptional outcomes for our learners.   The Raedwald Trust is relentless in its mission for excellence.

1.Enabling inspirational leadership and management 

What we will do How we will do it Why it is important
1.1 Develop our trust improvement system providing a strong growth platform for inspirational leadership at all levels and across all academies ·        Strengthen Trust self-evaluation metrics to provide for rapid response, early intervention and swift knowledge sharing

·        Refine our systems for trust wide information sharing allowing trustees and their committees accurate insights into our performance

Evidence led practice will allow us to make validated judgments about the quality of our provision; judgments on which improvement plans can be built and high impact provision delivered.  Our internal metrics and commitment to commissioning external ‘fierce friendships’ ensure robust conversations define our future
1.2   Create a culture of determined leadership across the trust, rooted in growth and possibility. ·         Re-calibrate lines of responsibility and accountability for all colleagues, matched to trust and academy priorities, tracked though daily performance management and professional development processes

·        Deploy trust leaders to undertake robust internal support and challenge reviews, in each setting, against agreed metrics

·        Embed relationships with external partners committed to reciprocal school improvement

By connecting with internal and external partners, greater opportunity for collaborative convergence is achieved, stimulating creativity and innovation.  Our systems will ensure our development is cohesive and connected.
1.3 Implement and refine a trust wide Governance Plan aimed at advancing governance capacity to hold leaders and academies to account ·        Embed revised trust wide scheme of delegation ensuring internal structures support trust development We recognise the crucial importance of governance operating through clear and straightforward accountability systems.  We know that strong governance ensures our self-improving systems have impact.
1.4 Embed accountability structures to ensure spending decisions always impact learner outcomes ·        Align professional development modules with pay policy to ensure staff have tools necessary to deliver cost effective, impactful, learning.

·        Equip the Trust central team with the skills and experience necessary to deliver economic, efficient and impactful learning across our academies

As public servants we understand the crucial obligation we have to ensure we deliver excellent education, in the public interest.   Through robust reviews of our spending patterns, we will secure our capacity to offer value for money across our organisation.
1.5 Strengthen the framework of Trust and Academy policies and procedures that meet statutory requirements, take account of local contexts, and support ethical accountability measures ·        Embed first class operating policies across the trust, reflecting practice and offering strong platforms from which exceptional learning experiences can grow We understanding that policy frames our organisational parameters and ensures we operate faithful to our core purpose.  At the Raedwald Trust, policy and procedure interprets our ethics.
1.6 Maximise opportunities offered by investment in digital capability to increase effective, agile, working practices across the trust. ·        Strengthen our commissioned digital strategy delivering opportunity for efficient and effective, agile, growth

·        Re-evaluate digital hardware needs across the trust, ensuring all Raedwald Trust environments have the equipment necessary to deliver exceptional pupil outcomes

At the Raedwald Trust we embrace technological advancement in both our business and learning environments because we understand the digital world stimulates and drives innovation and advancement

2. Delivering high quality learning 

What we will do How we will do it Why it is important
2.1 Implement an ambitious programme of exceptional learning for all learners through focussed, challenging, pupil target setting ·        Implement actions for our external reviews of learning across the Trust, providing opportunity for robust and aspirational forward planning

·        Integrate Thrive across all of our academies as a tool ensuring all of our provisions are matched to a robust understanding of need

·        Deliver trust wide Pedagogical Principles and SEND expectations across all of our classrooms

·        Strengthen innovative, bespoke professional development modules for all colleagues across our Trust.

Our first commitment is to our pupils and we take this commitment very seriously for each and every one of our learners.  We know that we can only deliver on our commitment when personalise learning plans offering careful, bespoke, challenge across a wide spectrum of foci
2.2 Assure all pupils of a wide curriculum offer built on prior experience,  future aspiration and an unfaltering faith in the transformative impact of exceptional education ·        Deliver The Pupil Charter for all learners in our organisation, offering opportunity for student leadership, character education and challenge

·        Implement our RT Curriculum, securing deliberate, conscious, collaborative decision making in each of our pathways

·        Establish a Trust wide curriculum leadership structure able to support exceptional pupil learning

Our learners require that we offer highly personalised education, transforming their life chances. Often, our learners prior education experiences have not been good; often they are challenged by seemingly insurmountable daily difficulty.   It is our duty, as public servants, to work together to ensure our learners are able to grow into healthy, happy, and productive members of our communities.

3. Securing safe and energising learning environments 

What we will do How we will do it Why it is important
3.1 Institutionalise exemplary, standardised, safeguarding practices, compliant with statutory requirement and mutually strengthening procedures within and beyond the trust ·        Establish an internal programme of safeguarding monitoring visits

·        Extend the work of the RT Safeguarding Group to create areas of knowledge shared through the 365 environment.

·        Pilot a programme of safeguarding learning for families and local communities

·        Design and implement a programme of training delivered by the newly qualified RT Mental Health First Aid trainers

It is vital we keep our pupils safe.  It is both our duty and moral obligation to work within a system that allows us to do just that, and that we continually seek our new ways to improve.



3.2 Establish a culture of learning by changing the way we work as a result of our scrutiny of front line experience ·        Review our processes for recording and reporting of ‘near misses’ and ‘data breaches’ through which leaders learn from prior experiences.
3.3 Work with our partners in social care, health and education, to secure our young people’s access to the support they require, at the time they require it ·        Cement links with existing and new partners through leader engagement with local networks, bespoke training and proactively seeking new opportunities for collaboration
3.4 Offer the maximum time of learning to all learners and, where a reintegration timetable is necessary, ensure we are doing all we can to increase contact hours ·        Implement and evaluate the routines for children admitted to an RT Pathways, ensuring fidelity to agreed time frames

·        Ensure each pupil has a full time offer of education

·        Work with Local Authority officers and other professionals to ensure all stakeholders are focussed on full time school attendance

4. Empowering supportive, skilled and nurturing staff

What we will do How we will do it Why it is important
4.1 Grow a culture of candid conversations, through openness and transparent feedback, promoting ethical accountability ·        Through the RT Professional Development modules, implement a programme of professional supervision focused on development and growth

·        Implement an accountability and feedback calendar for staff to feedback / engage with trust developments

·        Support leaders to scan the educational horizon to seek out opportunities for growth and development

We understand that every action and system has unintended consequences that must be understood and offer opportunity for future learning.  By operating in a culture of openness, we are better able to deliver exceptional education for our pupils
4.2  Invest in colleagues across the trust through a system of professional development aligned to the RT Pay Policy ·        Refine our bespoke trust wide professional development programme, supported through a local teaching school

·        Through newly established working groups or academy ambitions, pilot opportunities for staff to undertake and publish practitioner research aimed at strengthening  our understanding of ‘what works’

By defining individual growth, and partnering with colleagues, our staff are able to elevate clearly identified practices through a mutually supportive determination for trust wide improvement.
4.3  Uphold the 7 Nolan principles of public service through a shared commitment to values based process and practice ·        Publish the Principles at each leadership and governance meeting

·        Renew recruitment and induction packs, ensuring high profile focus on the 7 Principles

·        Monitor termly all RT Policy and key documents to ensure the principles are being applied across the trust.

Our core function, mandated from parliament, is to advance education for young people, in the public interest.   The Nolan principles are the test against which all of our activity is assessed

5. Forging focused partnerships and collaborations benefitting pupil outcomes 

What we will achieve How we will do it Why it is important
5.1 All stakeholders (including pupils and parents and carers) have a strong voice in influencing the work of the schools ·        Refocus our ‘friends of’ (FORT) group by focused follow up and planning for 2021 event

·        Focus stakeholder engagement strategy to support RT Pupil Charter, new traded services and learners with medical needs

·        Launch Medical Needs in Schools – Suffolk, building on the success in Oxfordshire and nationally

As part of a wider community, the Raedwald Trust has a fundamental obligation to actively participate with stakeholders and investors to ensure it can deliver on its commitment to young people.


As an organisation with specific skills and knowledge, the Raedwald Trust is able to be of mutual benefit to partners working to secure excellent learner outcomes.

5.2 To improve opportunities for learning about enterprise and employability in order to better prepare pupils for post 16 transitions ·        Build on the robust foundations put in place in 2018-2020, by strengthening our portfolio of provision across RT sites

·        Strengthen internal system to maximize work with local business and enterprise to develop meaningful learning opportunities for our learners

5.3 Strengthen opportunities to learn from ‘pupil voice’ and influence ·        Systematically gather feedback from pupils across the site, evaluating development opportunities from key points raised

·        Set up a Raedwald Trust Children’s Committee securing learners influence on organisational operation and strategy

5.4 We will learn from best practice, research and enquiry from other settings, schools and education systems in the UK and other countries. ·        Actively participate with national bodies such as PRUsAP; NAHE; AP CEO Network; Ofsted Headteacher Reference Group; and regional education networks


Raedwald Trust Evaluation Metrics and Key Performance Indicators

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The Raedwald Trust actively embraces way to measure impact.  Through succinct, shared, internal metrics and performance indicators described below, we are able to challenge, support, grow and deliver on our pledge to be exceptional, every hour of every day.  Our Trust Metrics and Key Performance Indicators are internally interrogated by our leadership structures and externally verified by commissioned scrutineers.  These ‘fierce friends’ to quality assure our work at academy and trust level.  Our reports are RAG rated by the HEG and reported to Trustees and they provide crucial insights allowing leadership to be held to account.  Our 2020-2021 external focus areas are:

  • Teaching, Learning and Assessment – annual external review (academy level)
  • Health & Safety audit – annual external review (Trust and academy level)
  • Safeguarding – annual external review (academy level)
  • General Data Protection – annual external review (Trust and academy level)
  • Digital Health – annual external review (Trust and academy level)
  • Leadership & Management – annual external review of agreed focused area (Trust and governance level)

For further information about any of our metrics or external audits, please contact us by email at lleeder@raedwaldtrust.org

For full details of Raedwald Trust Board of Trustees, Committees and associated information, please click here.