Welcome to The Elms

About us

The Woodlands AP Hubs began with the opening of The Oaks Hub in September 2020, situated on the Discovery Academy site and part of the Discovery Academy provision. With facilities for up to 16 students, age 14-16 the Hub is a safe place of learning for those who, for whatever reason, have become disengaged from mainstream education.

In September 2021, The Elms Hub opened on the Excel Academy site, as part of the Excel Academy provision. This provision caters for 8 students, age 14-16. This Hub, specialising in Creative Arts, has been designed to offer flexible spaces and a vocational education as well as cater for core subjects.

Both Hubs have Therapy rooms, to support ‘talking therapy’ and improve protective factors around mental health and wellbeing.

What We Offer

Supportive Environment

We provide a supportive environment to allow all students to learn and develop in their own way to reach their full potential. We offer a full curriculum (in line with their peers) including 5 GCSE’s and a vocational offer and support this through ‘Social Emotional Learning’. All students have intervention to support their needs and an Individual Plan to ensure targets are clear. There is rigour to the routine, but flexibility to allow for individuals to thrive.

1st Class Mental Health and Wellbeing Services

Our own going commitment to positively impacting on our young people’s mental health and wellbeing means provide all students with the opportunity to engage in weekly sessions with a Psychotherapeutic Practitioner. The practitioner is employed by the Trust to deliver therapies which support ongoing difficulties with mental health and wellbeing. ‘The Hive’, (the new Alpha Trust Wellbeing Service) is designed to be operational from the HUBs and to provide students with access to support for their mental health needs.

Changing Behaviour

We improve each student’s behaviour and attitudes towards their peers and adults. We do this by developing positive relationships and a keen sense of belonging. Children who have struggled in mainstream school often need to feel like they belong before they feel safe and ready to learn. Through helping to provide protective factors such as a sense of community, within an educational setting, children are helped to feel welcome and a part of a thriving community; one in which they are able to form stable, meaningful relationships. We teach about consequences, rather than just delivering them, and that every action has a consequence, whether positive or negative. This is life.


We prepare students for reintegration into mainstream education, where it’s appropriate to do so. This may not happen for all students. Some students settle well, achieve positive outcomes, but feel overwhelmed by a larger setting. In these cases, we develop their skills in confidence, independence and resilience and give students opportunities to flourish within the setting. A tree is planted for all our students who graduate either back into mainstream Academies or leave at the end of Y11, a representation of their time with us, the nurture received and a physical symbol of the growth already achieved as well as that which will follow.

Alpha Academies Trust Vision

‘Developing a 1st class Education that Overcomes Inequality’

The ‘Woodlands AP Hubs’ Vision

To become 1st Class Alternative Providers, where every child succeeds


The Oaks and Elms families will encourage diversity, and promote inclusion within a supportive setting, adding real value to learners’ educational experiences and reducing barriers to learning. They will continue to work with local schools and partners in education, health, the arts and business, to extend learning opportunities beyond the classroom, promoting innovation and lifelong learning. Teaching is inspirational and aspirational and takes account of students’ abilities, needs and ambitions in order to promote learning for life and achievement for all.

From tiny acorns, mighty oak trees grow.

Purpose (What we do)

To work together to re-engage all students in education, developing their confidence to fulfil their potential to succeed in life and to ensure zero permanent exclusions.

‘Growth, Resilience, Success’ (The Oaks)

‘Belong, Thrive, Succeed’ (The Elms)

Aims (Connecting our Purpose to our Vision – the ‘How’)

  • Reduce barriers to learning and encourage positive relationships, so all students attend, are literate and numerate, can regulate their emotions in challenging situations and feel like the ‘belong’.
  • Promote positive mental health and well-being through 1st class services which will enhance our student’s life, social skills, and cultural awareness.
  • Ensure our students are at the centre of a broad, varied and aspirational curriculum that is relevant for their futures and is qualification centred.

The Excel Academy continues to be a good school

| Ofsted 2021

Why Excel?

At Excel we aim to help students develop and grow into young adults who are ready and able to go out confidently into the world.

Our Curriculum

At Excel we aim to help students develop and grow into young adults who are ready and able to go out confidently into the world.

Latest News

Here you can find a collection of our latest news. We aim to keep all stakeholders as up-to-date as possible.

ClassCharts Parent

We use ClassCharts

Class Charts is behaviour management software used by teachers to record and track student achievement and behaviour.

You can download Class Charts from the below links.

IRIS ParentMail

We use IRIS ParentMail

All of our Academy information at your fingertips. Keeping track of school activities and news as well as endless forms to complete and things to pay for.

You can download IRIS ParentMail from the below links.

If you require a paper copy of any of the pages / documents published on this website, please click here and complete the form stating which page(s) / document(s) you require along with your name and address.