Welcome to The Ark

The Ark is a safe place for students at St Paul’s Academy

The Learning Mentors (LMs) at St Paul’s are the staff members who oversee The Ark. The Learning Mentors play an integral role in the life of both students and staff at the Academy. They provide support and guidance to students to help overcome social, emotional and behavioural problems, which act as a barrier to learning.

How do they do this?

LMs do this by building professional, helping relationships with students who have been referred to them. These referrals can be made by the student themselves, a peer, a member of staff or a family member. LMs will involve parents & families and can facilitate access to specialist support for young people and families.

Why do some students need support?

Students of all abilities can be identified as underachieving because of a wide range of social and emotional factors. These barriers can become internalised, taking the form of:

  • low self-esteem;
  • lack of confidence;
  • poor concentration;
  • difficulties in relationships or unmanageable feelings of anger, loss or sadness.

They may also affect health, attendance and level of engagement in learning.

Most students need short term support to sort out and make sense of what is happening to them, to reflect on how their actions can be causing problems and to work out ways to making life better. Some students have a longer term package of support.

Learning Mentors’ working methods:

  • Daily Duty Learning Mentors: Provision of a responsive service to all students and staff.
  • One-to-One Interventions: Each Learning Mentor has a caseload of up to 14 students at any one time.

Learning Mentors will meet with their mentee over an agreed length of time.
Focus Groups: Provide a safe environment for students to explore, with their peers, issues that are relevant to them.

Who are they?

We have four Learning Mentors & a Lead Learning Mentor. Our Lead Learning Mentor is also the Academy’s Designated Safeguarding Lead (DSL).

These are some external agencies who work with our students in the Ark:



Tools students can use for information, help & support: