• Orchard Hill College & Academy Trust, Quadrant House, 8th Floor - The Quadrant, Sutton SM2 5AS
  • 0345 402 0453
  • enquiries@ohcat.org

Training School

OHC&AT is committed to providing outstanding educational opportunities for all our pupils and students, and we recognise that recruiting and retaining the highest quality staff across all our settings is central to this commitment. The Training School oversees provision of a suite of CPD and career development opportunities that are both responsive and forward-thinking. Our offer includes:

  • SEND-specialist teaching pathways that enable staff to learn and qualify while working;
  • apprenticeships;
  • core requirements such as safeguarding and health and safety;
  • a range of SEND specialist modules that allow staff to build their expertise in specific areas relevant to their role and interests;
  • bespoke training sessions;
  • access to professional and specialist staff networks;
  • support with research and development.

With a mixture of online and face to face delivery, drawing on the expertise of senior leaders and associates, our high quality training is informed by current research and policy around SEND, education and HR. This wide-ranging programme allows staff to develop a truly versatile skill set in order to build confidence in supporting pupils and students with additional needs to learn and flourish.

OHC&AT subscribes to the view that work can and should be considered a health outcome, and we therefore see professional development in terms of wellbeing as well as quality assurance. Staff benefit both professionally and personally from having confidence in their own skills, confidence in a supportive leadership and management structure, and confidence that there are opportunities for career progression. As with our pupils and students, we aim to support our staff to achieve their ambitions and many members of OHC&AT staff have progressed, within the organisation, from teaching to middle and senior leadership and beyond.

The team

The team is comprised of experienced SEND educators and leaders, working closely with senior colleagues across OHC&AT to deliver the training and CPD offer.

Our experienced team provides comprehensive support with CPD and staff development needs across OHC&AT. High quality training and development helps to ensure high standards of achievement for all children and young people in OHC&AT provisions by:

  • Ensuring that staff at all levels hold suitable qualifications, skills and experience to fulfil their roles to a high standard;
  • Attracting and retaining high quality staff through the development and promotion of rewarding career pathways;
  • Ensuring that staff development is linked to organisational priorities and compliance requirements.

This includes working in partnership with Canterbury Christ Church University to deliver the Diploma in Education & Training specialist pathway, facilitating cross-organisational knowledge exchange and supporting research engagement across the OHC&AT family.

Key contacts:

Suzanna Challenger
Head of Strategic CPD, Training & Policy Development

Anita Aldridge
Training Administrator


This is a very exciting and pivotal moment in the lives of St Dominic’s, Brantridge and Grafham Grange schools.  Academy conversion under the sponsorship of Orchard Hill College Academy Trust will help secure their futures and, no doubt, lead to better outcomes for pupils and students, families and carers, staff and all stakeholders.

Ken Cowdery, Chair of Governors

Latest News

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We were thrilled that our Occupational Health (OH) Practitioner Lisa Watkins, was invited by the Lead Professor at the Royal Society of Medicine to present at a webinar for OH Physicians and OH Nurses on ‘The challenges presented by Covid-19 …

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OHC&AT supports World Mental Health Day

The 10th October 2020 marks World Mental Health Day, a topic that OHC&AT supports wholeheartedly as an organisation. Laurie Cornwell, Executive Principal/Deputy CEO put pen to paper to illustrate how the Trust takes care of its staff, pupils’ and students’ …

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Healing Together

COVID 19 has increased the anxieties of some students. So, we are proud that staff across the Trust have completed their ‘Healing Together’ training. Healing together is a programme designed to support young people who are vulnerable as a result the COVID-19 pandemic. The …

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OHC&AT awarded COVID-19 funding from Youth Endowment Fund  

OHC&AT in partnership with Innovating Minds has been awarded a grant from the Youth Endowment Fund to support young people who are vulnerable as a result the COVID-19 pandemic.   Through ongoing monitoring and assessment of our safeguarding and wellbeing offer, it became clear that students face multiple challenges in relation to COVID-19 and lockdown restrictions. Their anxieties …

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