The Lodestar journey began in April 2017 when Norfolk County Council agreed to the start-up of a new specialist provision, specifically for children in Norfolk who are awaiting a place at the Short Stay School for Norfolk.
The name Lodestar was chosen for the school – Lodestar literally means leading star, which we felt was an ideal name for what this brand new provision aims to achieve.
In May 2017 the Head of Centre, an Administrator and a small team of Instructors and Support Workers were appointed to begin putting together this new school.
The team first had to identify the mission, the values and the beliefs of this school. We then worked throughout June and July visiting other provisions, researching the best practices seen in good and outstanding schools, planning the curriculum and creating the Lodestar systems from scratch.
Each procedure used in Lodestar has been carefully developed to meet the needs of pupils who are currently out of education, and who will need support and guidance to manage re-engaging with professionals, and the education system. Our curriculum was designed specifically to offer short and engaging topics across all ages, delivered in short sessions and in small groups.
Unfortunately our September start in Hooper Lane was delayed due to some unavoidable building works, so the staff team re-planned for a staggered start over the Autumn term.
Lodestar will now begin to open in September 2017, and will offer a limited service to pupils in the area through September to December, from our temporary base at Carrowbreck House.
In January 2018 we will move into our permanent residences in Norwich, at which point we aim to deliver our full provision to all our pupils.