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United Learning

United Learning 




The Road to United Learning

United Learning was originally founded in 1883, as the Church Schools Company, to tackle one of the main social issues of the day: providing high-quality academic education for girls to enable them to enter the newly-available universities and access the professions.  The group began with just one school, Surbiton High School in January 1884, followed by Sunderland High School later in the same year and Guildford High School in 1888.  All three remain in the group today.

As the Millennium approached, the Trustees reflected on the future and asked themselves: ‘what would our Founders have done had they been alive today?’  The answer was to respond to the key education issue of the day by raising the aspirations and life chances of young people living in some of the most deprived parts of the country.  They looked to the newly-launched Academies Programme which initially replaced the country’s worst-performing schools with academies.  They accepted the government’s invitation to develop a chain of academies and did so with its first opening in Manchester in 2003 quickly followed by others in London, the Midlands and the North West.

Over the past ten years, the group, still as two linked charities, has grown at pace and today comprises over 30 academies and independent schools with more joining each year.  It currently educates over 30,000 students and employs over 5,500 members of staff including over 2,500 teachers.

In August 2012, at the behest of the schools, the group’s independent and state sector schools joined together to form one external-facing group, United Learning.  The name draws heavily on the group’s history and captures the essence of what it is: uniquely united across both the state and independent sectors in its dedication and focus on learning.


The Values and Ethos of United Learning

United Learning’s ethos is to bring out the best in everyone – students, staff, parents and the wider community.  As a group of schools committed to providing excellent education through which all students are able to progress, achieve and go on to succeed in life, United Learning’s approach is underpinned by the following core values:

    • Ambition – to achieve the best for ourselves and others;
    • Confidence – to have the courage of our convictions and to take risks in the right cause;
    • Creativity – to imagine possibilities and make them real;
    • Respect – of ourselves and others in all that we do;
    • Enthusiasm – to seek opportunity, find what is good and pursue talents and interests;
    • Determination – to overcome obstacles and reach success.

To find out more about United Learning, please visit our website: .