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“Transforming Life Chances”

Children first, Aspire, Challenge, Achieve

The Thinking Schools Academy Trust, ranked in the Top 10 multi-academy trusts (MAT) in the country for the GCSE performance of its secondary schools by the DfE, is made up of a family of schools that work together to “improve the life chances” of all our children and young people. We share a common mission to nurture successful children who are confident and can think and act independently. Our cognitive approach to education defines us but does not create a “one size fits all”.

At the heart of The Thinking Schools Academy Trust is the belief that the work that we do must transform the life chances of students.

We believe that the best way to transform life chances is to actively shape the minds, attitudes and habits of young people through a framework of cognitive education that enables them to become the master of their own destiny.

About Our Trust

Our Academies

From September 2018 there will be 16 Academies in our Trust covering three hubs; Medway, Portsmouth and Deal. This includes 5 Secondary and 11 Primary/Infant/Junior Academies. We are a successful and rapidly growing Trust and have high expectations for our Academies setting ambitious targets for pupils’ learning and progress.


The Thinking Schools Academy Trust (TSAT), ranked the best multi-academy trust (MAT) in the country for the performance of its secondary schools by the DfE, operates in two hubs; Medway and Portsmouth. The core purpose and ambition of TSAT is to transform the life chances of young people through the application of a cognitive approach to education – please click here for further details on the philosophy of the organisation.

TSAT is made up of a family of schools including Primary Schools, Grammar Schools, High Schools and Comprehensive Schools. The schools work together to transform the life chances of all our children and young people. We share a common mission to nurture successful children who are confident and can think and act independently. Our cognitive approach to education defines us but does not create a ‘one size fits all’.

All TSAT academies, whether converter or sponsored, are equal partners in the Trust and are automatically part of the New Horizons Teaching School Alliance. Therefore, all schools have access to the same level of support and services that the Trust provides. The Trust prides itself on the very high quality of support and services it is able to provide to all its schools, these include:

  • Academic support e.g. Specialist Leaders of Education in specific subjects and Key Stage
  • leadership and strategic planning to support students.
  • Pastoral support e.g. the Trust employs its own safeguarding and attendance officer to support all schools.
  • Leadership support e.g. secondments between school leadership teams
  • Headteacher support e.g. phase Directors to support our Headteachers.
  • Human resources and recruitment support e.g. the Trust has its own HR department to support all schools and centrally support each school to recruit the best possible staff.
  • Finance support e.g. the Trust centrally recruits and employs all the Business Managers who are over-seen by a Director of Finance to ensure Headteachers and schools receive the best possible financial support.
  • Site management e.g. due to the size of the Trust we receive guaranteed Capital funding which we use to support all our schools in a co-ordinated programme of capital works that ensures all students in the Trust have the best possible learning environment.
  • As a consequence of our supportive ethos and ambition to transform the life chances of young people in all our schools, sponsored or converter, have seen improvements in student outcomes since joining the Trust. For example, The Portsmouth Academy (TPA) was the second highest performing school across Hampshire and Portsmouth local authorities – a brilliant turnaround from 2013, when TSAT took it on after it fell into ‘Special Measures’. It was also recently judged as Good with Outstanding leadership and management by Ofsted. Similarly impressive were the results of Rochester Grammar School (RGS) and Holcombe Grammar School (HGS), both in Medway – with 100% of RGS students achieving the pass grade of 4 or above in both English and maths, and 96% of students at HGS doing the same. The Victory Academy in Chatham, TSAT’s fourth secondary, is rated the best non-selective school in Medway, with the DfE recognising it as ‘above average’ nationally. Its success story continued when it received a ‘Good’ rating by Ofsted – only two years after it was taken on by TSAT while in a perilous financial position and underperforming academically, in a dramatic turnaround.

    Each school has its own Headteacher who is responsible for establishing the ethos and vision of the school within the framework of the Trust values and shared belief in a cognitive approach to education. All Headteachers are supported by either a Director of Phase or an Executive Principal. In this way every school has its own character and individuality, whilst also sharing a common language of learning and desire to secure the best possible outcomes for students.

    The Trust looks to ensure that students and staff benefit from opportunities, shared expertise and resources across the Trust. For students, we organise a variety of cross-phase and interphase opportunities. For example: Primary School students can access Secondary Science laboratories and expertise to ignite their enthusiasm in this subject; Trust Design and Technology roadshows that enable all Primary students in the Trust to access high quality D&T opportunities; we have an inter-school Primary sports day competition supported by the Secondary Schools as well as football clubs; Secondary School students will often support a nearby Trust Primary school through activities such as PE, guided reading and class support; the Secondary Schools take part in a number of inter-school competitions such as the Olympiad; often Trust schools will be invited to special events in the schools such as Women’s Day at the Victory Academy and the Medway Secondary Schools offer a collaborative sixth form curriculum to enable students to access the widest possible choice of courses to meet their ambitions.

    For Trust staff there have been many opportunities to share best practice and also develop and progress their careers within the Trust. We build connections between all our teachers to enable them to share good practice and support each other on a day to day basis. We use the BlueSky platform to facilitate this and have whole Trust projects such as the Secondary 9-1 project to which everyone can contribute and share their ideas. We are moving to a model of shared CPD across the schools to enable staff the maximum choice and opportunity for professional development and we wish to support all our staff to achieve their personal career goals. These opportunities are throughout the organisation and have ranged from teachers becoming SLE’s in the New Horizons Teaching School Alliance, to secondments and posts in middle and senior leadership positions within the Trust, to Headteachers becoming executive leaders. We believe in developing all our staff through a comprehensive programme of Continuing Professional Development and professional opportunities so that they can develop their career in the way they wish. This starts from the moment a member of staff joins our Trust with our dedicated NQT, NQT+ and new staff CPD programme through to Trust financed NPQH and MSc courses. Currently, the whole Trust Executive Team have been developed from within the Trust, 3/4’s of Headteachers have been internal appointments and a similar proportion of Senior School leaders are also internally promoted members of staff. Therefore, as a Trust we very much believe in developing and nurturing the talents of all our staff from the moment they join our organisation.

    Message from the Chair

    TSAT Members, Directors and Governors are committed to ensuring our trust continues to provide the highest quality of education. We believe passionately in our mission to “transform the life chances” of all our children and young people. Through working together with this commitment we believe we are stronger and as we grow our ambition of what we can achieve grows with us.

    I am proud of our staff, who are outstanding professionals and I am equally proud of the high quality and dedication of our governors who take seriously their responsibilities and ensure we support and challenge our leaders to inspire all their staff and our young people to strive for excellence.

    At the heart of TSAT is the belief that the work that we do must transform the life chances of students.

    We believe that the best way to transform life chances is to actively shape the minds, attitudes and habits of young people through a framework of cognitive education that enables them to become the master of their own destiny.

    This framework of cognitive education is constructed through the use of the Thinking School approach. Research from organisations such as the Sutton Trust has repeatedly demonstrated that when children understand how their brains work they achieve better academic and personal outcomes than those who do not. This is known as meta-cognition.

    “We are what we habitually do” (Aristotle), to transform life chances we have to transform habits.

    The ultimate goal is that every individual, child or adult, in the organisation consciously recognises their own habits, strengths and areas for development and actively seeks to improve themselves thereby creating transformational change in each individual.

    Transforming life chances by …

  • Providing an educational framework that promotes the development of effective habits and cognitive structures.
  • Challenging everyone to aspire to and strive for personal excellence.
  • Enabling each individual to realise their potential and become the master of their own destiny.
  • Thinking Schools Academy Trust

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    Current openings



    • Job Title

      Learning Support Assistant

    • Location

      Chatham

    • Posted

      21st October 2020

    • School

      Holcombe Grammar School

    • Salary

      £14,527 - £16,288

    • Hours

      Term Time

    • Description

      Learning Support Assistant Employer: Holcombe Grammar School Salary: TSAT C Grade £17,160 – £19,240 FTE (£14,527 - £16,288 for the hours and weeks stated) Hours and weeks: 37 hour ...

    • Job Title

      Teacher of Maths

    • Location

      Chatham

    • Posted

      21st October 2020

    • School

      Holcombe Grammar School

    • Salary

      £15,874 - £24,637

    • Hours

      Part Time

    • Description

      Teacher of Maths  Salary: £26,458- £41,063 (£15,874 - £24,637 for hours stated) Contract: Permanent, Part Time 0.6 FTE (19.5 hours) Start Date: January 2021 Closing Date of P ...

    • Job Title

      Science Technician

    • Location

      Deal

    • Posted

      20th October 2020

    • School

      The Goodwin Academy

    • Salary

      £17,874 - £20,118

    • Hours

      Term Time

    • Description

      Science Technician TSAT Grade D £20,646 – £23,237 FTE (£17,874 - £20,118 for the hours and weeks stated) Start Date: ASAP 37 hours per week 40 weeks per year (term time only plus ...

    • Job Title

      Lunchtime Playleader

    • Location

      Rochester

    • Posted

      19th October 2020

    • School

      The Gordon Children's Academy

    • Salary

      £2,821 - £2,861 pro-rata for hours stated

    • Hours

      Full Time

    • Description

      Lunchtime Playleader Salary: £2,821 - £2,861 pro-rata for hours stated An exciting opportunity to join our Ofsted rated ‘Good’ School (February 2017). We are looking for a Lunchti ...

    • Job Title

      Teaching Assistant KS2

    • Location

      Chatham

    • Posted

      19th October 2020

    • School

      New Horizons Children's Academy

    • Salary

      £13,742 - £15,408 per anum

    • Hours

      Full Time

    • Description

      We are the best performing primary school in Medway, ranking well above average progress in all areas. – 2019 Department of Education Primary league table results We are a modern ...

    • Job Title

      Exam Invigilator

    • Location

      Portsmouth

    • Posted

      12th October 2020

    • School

      The Portsmouth Academy

    • Salary

      £8.84 per an hour

    • Hours

      Full Time

    • Description

      Exam Invigilators Salary: £8.84per hour Hours: Casual Basis Ofsted April 2017 – The Portsmouth Academy is a GOOD school with OUTSTANDING leadership and management. The Thinking Sc ...

    • Job Title

      Key Stage 2 Teacher

    • Location

      Chatham

    • Posted

      12th October 2020

    • School

      New Horizons Children's Academy

    • Salary

      £26,458 - £41,063

    • Hours

      Full Time

    • Description

      Salary: TSAT Teacher Scale £26,458 to £41,063 per annum Location: Chatham, Medway, Kent Start Date: January 2021 We are the best performing primary school in Medway, ranking well ...

    • Job Title

      KS2 Class Teacher

    • Location

      Rochester

    • Posted

      12th October 2020

    • School

      The Gordon Children's Academy

    • Salary

      £26,458 - £41,063

    • Hours

      Full Time

    • Description

      An exciting opportunity to join a large three form entry Ofsted rated ‘Good’ School (February 2017).  The Gordon’s Children’s Academy is a newly federated academy based in th ...

    • Job Title

      Designated Safeguarding Lead / Home School Support Worker

    • Location

      Rochester

    • Posted

      12th October 2020

    • School

      The Gordon Children's Academy

    • Salary

      Salary - £25,577 - £28,766

    • Hours

      Full Time

    • Description

      Designated Safeguarding Lead / Home School Support Worker Salary - £25,577 - £28,766 37 Hours per a week.39 weeks per a year An exciting opportunity to join a large three form ent ...

    • Job Title

      Learning Support Assistant

    • Location

      Chatham

    • Posted

      12th October 2020

    • School

      The Victory Academy

    • Salary

      £14,527 - £19,692

    • Hours

      Full Time

    • Description

      Learning Support Assistant Salary: TSAT Grade C/D -pro rata to £14,527 - £19,692 for hours and weeks stated “The Victory Academy is GOOD in all areas” “Achievement has risen over ...

    • Job Title

      KS1 Class Teacher

    • Location

      Rochester

    • Posted

      10th October 2020

    • School

      The Gordon Children's Academy

    • Salary

      £26,458 - £41,063

    • Hours

      Full Time

    • Description

      An exciting opportunity to join a large three form entry Ofsted rated ‘Good’ School (February 2017).  The Gordon’s Children’s Academy is a newly federated academy based in th ...

    • Job Title

      Teacher of Science

    • Location

      Chatham

    • Posted

      8th October 2020

    • School

      The Victory Academy

    • Salary

      £26,458 - £41,063

    • Hours

      Full Time

    • Description

      KS3 Teacher of Science - Maternity Cover £26,458- £41,063 per annum Temporary, Full Time (from October 2020) We are a growing school and looking to expand our team. We are looking ...

    • Job Title

      Lunchtime Playleader

    • Location

      Chatham

    • Posted

      7th October 2020

    • School

      New Horizons Children's Academy

    • Salary

      £2,655 - £2,861

    • Hours

      Term Time

    • Description

      New Horizons Children’s Academy opened in September 2014 with only four classes, we have now grown to deliver a fantastic education to nearly 600 children from the local community ...

    • Job Title

      Midday Meals Supervisor

    • Location

      Chatham

    • Posted

      7th October 2020

    • School

      The Victory Academy

    • Salary

      £2,655 - £2,861

    • Hours

      Part Time

    • Description

      “The Victory Academy is GOOD in all areas”- Ofsted October 2017  Salary: £2,655 - £2,861 per annum 10 hours per week, 38 weeks per year Term time, Part time As Midday Meals S ...

    • Job Title

      Behaviour Support Assistant

    • Location

      Chatham

    • Posted

      7th October 2020

    • School

      The Victory Academy

    • Salary

      £17,478 - £19,672

    • Hours

      Term Time

    • Description

      Behaviour Support Assistant TSAT Grade D £20,045 - £22,561 (£17,478 - £19,672 for hours and weeks stated) 37 hours per week 39 weeks per year (term-time only plus 5 INSET days) We ...