Our Curriculum

We are proud to be a Specialist School.

Sunnydown is a Specialist School, educating students who have an Education, Health & Care Plan (EHCP) which identifies Communication and Interaction (CoIN), often associated with autism, as an area of Special Educational Need (SEN).

Our unrelenting focus is on providing exceptional safeguarding, which in turn secures emotional stability. As a result, the academic and social potential of our students is unlocked.

The aspirational vision of Sunnydown School is to transform lives, achieved through offering a well designed, broad, enriched, enhanced and exciting curriculum, bespoke to our cohort of SEN students.

A journey through the educational opportunities afforded at Sunnydown develops student resilience, independence and cooperation through encouragement, enablement and ultimately empowerment; this is RICE³, our Mission.

RICE³ is underpinned by the principles of Maslow's Hierarchy of needs, enhanced through the embedded House System.


Sunnydown School believes that curriculum is best understood in its broadest sense, comprising the full range of learning experiences, carefully designed to empower students to realise their potential.

Our innovative Friday Curriculum balances the demands of formal academic learning delivered from Monday to Thursday, encompassing the National Curriculum.


Pastorally we actively teach Mindfulness, employ a Restorative Justice approach to conflict resolution, and employ THRIVE principles during focussed support sessions.

Academically we provide targeted support through early and ongoing identification of needs, and provide Elklan inspired tools to develop communication skills, insisting upon a Growth Mindset and Active Learning.

Our staff facilitate high-quality structured teaching (Sunnydown Four) which is integral to responding to the often masked, yet specific SEN of our students.

The result of our holistic approach to education is young men with CoIN who are successfully prepared for life beyond Sunnydown as active members of our society: a modern and changing world. Measures of success include GCSE outcomes and destination data.

Our policy is organised by considering the intent of our curriculum, its implementation (including teaching and learning) and how its impact (including assessment and reporting) is assessed.

We are proud to be a Specialist School.


Academic Education