Welcome to St Andrew’s College

St Andrew's College is located within the Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service (CAMHS) at St Andrew's Healthcare in Northampton to provide education for children with complex mental health, learning disability and autism needs. 

Our college offers an individualised approach to teaching, based on a thorough understanding of the learners needs, interests, goals and aspirations. A full and structured timetable is designed with the learner which aims to build trust, self-esteem, self-confidence and inspire future desires to learn and gain qualifications. 

Our College aims

Are to give every young person:

  • an outstanding education
  • opportunities to try new things
  • confidence in their abilities
  • hope for the future.

Our approach

"We use a Trauma Informed Care approach within the College which is aligned to a young person's care treatment plan. We work at an individual's level and are alongside the young people as they travel through their recovery journey.

The College offers a really broad curriculum, which we call Activ8, and this provides our young people with the opportunity to study qualifications and skill development in a range of subjects including; Maths, English, Science, Art, ICT, Expressive Arts, PE, everything you would do in a mainstream education setting, and within this context we build an individual programme for each young person based on their needs and what they want to get out of their education." Head Teacher, St Andrew's College

An Ofsted Good Provider

Our latest Ofsted report, issued in 2021, rated the CAMHS College as 'Good' overall and 'Outstanding' for behaviours and attitudes.

The report said that parents of our students believed that the college had 'changed their children's lives for the better'. The inspectors stated that students' behaviour when in school is 'exceptional' and they are 'respectful, calm and enthusiastic to learn.'

Our latest Ofsted report

2021 Ofsted Report

Our vibrant learning environment supports the wide range of subjects offered to students

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Conducting science experiments in a safe environment

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The Activate 8 curriculum offers a broad range of subjects

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The Library provides a quiet learning environment

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Music and arts are a key facet of the College curriculum

College atrium web image

A vibrant learning environment

CAMHS College jumping

Learning outside of the classroom is a regular occurrence for our young people

Former student comment

"Thank you for all the support you have given me during my time here at St Andrew’s. You have always done your best to help me progress in education, even when my motivation levels were so low, and you believed in me. You even helped me through my exams which is a major accomplishment and which I am so, so thankful for."

Activ8 Curriculum

Our Active8 curriculum has been designed to work with our trauma informed care approach to provide holistic development to our pupils. It covers the development of key skills and processes such as self -esteem, self-confidence, resilience and personal coping skills alongside academic and personal development skills and understanding. 

How do we deliver our curriculum?

This curriculum is based on the National curriculum and includes access to all subject areas, but is taught in a more bespoke way to enable learners with complex needs to feel safe and make progress.

Much of our education is delivered in a 1:1 format with teachers to provide individual teaching and learning opportunities. As young people make progress we may build some group sessions into the timetable to encourage collaborative working and cooperation.

The education team work alongside other disciplines: psychiatry, psychology, speech and language therapy, occupational therapy, music therapy, physiotherapy, chaplaincy, dietetics, medical and nursing.  This helps to deliver a personalised educational and therapeutic timetable for all young people appropriate to their individual needs.

Activ8 is flexible enough to meet the needs of our diverse range of pupils and is matched to individual needs. It builds upon each individuals existing knowledge, skills, interests and understanding.

Measuring progress is achieved through an initial baseline assessment and interviews with the pupil. Following this, regular formal and informal assessments of each young person's academic progress, personal development and mental health journey is monitored, with approaches adapted where required to ensure progression in learning and development.

The Activ8 curriculum

Has been designed to help young people's:

  • self-motivation
  • application of intellectual, physical and creative effort
  • interest in their work
  • ability to think and learn for themselves.

LightBulb Mental Wellness Programme for Schools

The LightBulb Mental Wellness Programme for Schools is an award winning initiative that provides schools with an opportunity to build a culture of positive mental health and wellbeing for their students and staff.

The school was awarded a Silver Pearson National Teaching Award for Impact Through Partnership in 2023.

The programme is not-for-profit. Its priority is to help improve the mental health and overall wellbeing of young people and the people who work with them. It provides a ready-made framework for primary and secondary schools, enabling those that participate to demonstrate and showcase excellence regarding mental health practice to regulatory bodies such as Ofsted. This is achieved by providing training to staff and parents that improves their knowledge, understanding and skills to identify potential signs and symptoms of mental health issues. In addition, the training give practical tools to develop resilience, coping strategies and self-regulation.

Light Bulb works with schools towards certification by meeting structured outcomes based on the Ofsted Framework: Quality of Education, Behaviour and Attitudes, Personal Development, and Leadership and Management. When the school is confident of meeting the outcomes they book an audit where their evidence is presented. The Audit is conducted in a friendly and supportive way that encourages the school to share its good practice. 

To find out more and enquire about Light Bulb in your school, click here or email college@stah.org

What people are saying about us

"The school is a calm, caring environment. Structured, well-established routines help pupils to feel safe. Students say that staff listen to them and help them to manage their emotions and behaviour. This support helps pupils to behave exceptionally well when they are in school.

Teachers assess pupil's needs carefully when they are admitted to the hospital. Leaders offer pupils an ambitious curriculum...which is personalised to their needs. Teachers know pupils well...and support them to be resilient and develop their self esteem.'' - Ofsted, 2021

"Ian is my favourite teacher. We discuss and debate everything. He's a really easy going person. We get work done but he is calm and relaxed." - student

"Helen helps me from the side, she gives just the right amount of advice...you don't find a lot of people like Helen in the world. She goes out of her way to help everyone." - student

 “With grateful thanks and appreciation for all the support you gave to S whilst she was at FitzRoy. We were amazed that she managed to take 3 x GCSEs and was very engaged in education – in no small part due to all your efforts and encouragement.” - parent.