Welcome to the CAT from the CEO

The Castleman Academy Trust is named after Charles Castleman, a Wimborne solicitor who was chiefly responsible for the building of the railway line that operated between Southampton to Dorchester in 1847. Castleman was a great visionary and entrepreneur and was passionate about developing the local area. Just like Charles Castleman, so too the Castleman Academy Trust is passionate about developing the talent and potential of young people in the area and committed to ensuring all young people in its schools experience inspirational learning.

Created in September 2014, the Trust’s sole purpose is to “advance education for public benefit”. That means we are a charity that strives to provide high quality education to children and young people.

At Castleman, we know school is not only a place of academic learning – we learn so much more than “reading, writing and arithmetic”. At Castleman Schools, everything we learn and teach is underpinned by our learning values of Respect, Independence, Creativity and Inclusion. Learning how to learn is about discovering what you’re capable of and then being confident to “stretch yourself”. Knowing “where”, “how” and “why” is more important than knowing “what”.

Since we cannot know what knowledge will be most needed in the future, it is senseless trying to teach it in advance. Instead we should try to turn out people who love learning so much and learn so well that they will be able to learn whatever needs to be learned” (John Holt – Educational Author).

We do not know what the future will look like for our children. Therefore our curriculum aims to prepare our learners for being able to deal with any situation in which they might find themselves. We are committed to ensuring our curriculum is based on real life experiences, is challenging but supportive, based around play and experimentation and rigorously assessed to ensure learners progress and reach their full potential.

As educators, we believe that our fundamental job is to help learners flourish in society. In our classes today we have the chefs, artists, accountants, doctors, teachers, scientists, pilots, hairdressers and whatever else of tomorrow. How we as parents and teachers inspire, motivate and develop our young learners will have an untold effect on the future.

We believe that EVERYONE is excellent and clever – as there are many ways to be clever! We strive to “liberate the excellence” in everyone, believing that excellence appears in a variety of ways.

Learning is a social experience. We learn from and with others. It is our responsibility to give learners the opportunity to experience the world first hand and then see it from another’s point of view. We are shaping the community of tomorrow and as such, we need to teach the children to listen to and learn from others’ points of view and show respect for them.

Most importantly, we believe that “life is a marathon where everyone who completes the course, wins – not a race where only the first three count”. Our most important job as parents, teachers and governors is to form relationships so that our learners feel safe to grow, try new things, make mistakes and flourish, without fear of failure.

Being part of the Castleman Academy Trust is exciting! Adults and youngsters alike are encouraged, supported and inspired to be the best they can be and contribute to their school and the wider community.