Opened in September 2020 in Bearsted, Snowfields Academy is a brand-new, purpose-built special school designed to accommodate 140 students between the ages of 11 and 18 whose primary need is autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Snowfields Academy is the newest school to be built within Leigh Academies Trust (LAT), a range of primary, secondary and special schools across Kent, Medway and Southeast London.
All students at Snowfields Academy have an education, health and care plan (EHCP). Class sizes are small so as to enable learners to focus and to receive good levels of personalised support in the classroom. A highly-supportive pastoral structure is central to the academy, placing the needs of each student first, and a commitment to instilling British values and delivering a strong spiritual, moral, social and cultural (SMSC) education is evident within the curriculum. Staff at Snowfields Academy are trained to support those with both mental health difficulties and other behavioural needs, and all students and their families have access to the support they need, including contact with trained Emotional Literacy Support Assistants (ELSA). Emphasis is placed on preparing learners for their later lives and supporting them to identify and achieve their aspirations; as a result, students can make choices from a blended curriculum combining both vocational and academic subjects. Regardless of their pathway choices, each student’s experience will be tailored to suit the needs and ambitions of the individual learner.