Frequently Asked Questions
All Mead Secondary schools offer three elements: orderly climate for learning; rich academic curriculum; an emphasis on wider development of young people. However, each of our schools also has distinctive elements, reflecting the community it serves. So, Brook Mead will have its own character within the Mead framework, characterised by high expectations for all. This character will evolve as we get to know our new community!
Brook Mead Academy will open in September 2021 for 240 Year 7 pupils. It has a citywide catchment so all families within the city are able to apply for a place. The school will grow organically each year to a full capacity of 1500, with year groups of 300 from 2023. The first intake of students have the unique opportunity to be the founding year group of the new school.
There is room for 8 classes in year 7 and a further 8 classes next year in year 8. We also have a bespoke dining area.
All Y7 and Y8 classes will be on the Brook Mead aside apart from PE which will take place at the new sports facilities’ CMA and De Montford University where we have an agreement to use their wonderful site.
Tutor groups will have 25-27 pupils; in lessons, we vary the class sizes so that pupils who require additional support will be taught in smaller classes.
Brook Mead Academy cannot grow over the 1500 student capacity, as the accommodation will not allow it.
EBacc is short for ‘English Baccalaureate’, which is where students study English, mathematics, science, humanities and a language. At Brook Mead Academy, the focus of the school will be on students achieving the EBacc. Therefore, this will include all students studying at least one modern foreign language to GCSE.
Performing and creative arts will have a place on the curriculum at Brook Mead, in both the temporary and permanent site. At Rushey Mead Academy for example, music has been a particular success following the introduction of scholarships which enables students to be provided with an instrument and tuition – there is now a junior and senior orchestra with over sixty students participating. At Castle Mead, there is already a thriving orchestra and choir. Both are overseen by our Director of Music, Mike Rule.
The school is very well equipped with IT and students have access to laptops and subject specific IT such as cameras in Art. Each teaching area has an interactive whiteboard, and the teachers use visualiser (a device that projects the teacher’s work onto a big screen to model expected responses for pupils). The two science labs are very well equipped, including a prep room, and students can look forward to participating in hands on experiments.
The school will be situated in the west of the city, the proposed site is on the corner of Fosse Road North and Groby Road.
While the permanent school is built, Brook Mead has been able to secure high quality temporary accommodation on the existing Castle Mead site in the heart of the city near the Highcross shopping complex.
The buildings are already in situ and available for Brook Mead. They are a high quality, pre-fab style building. They have been providing a high quality learning experience for Castle Mead Academy scholars for the last year.
The temporary site is extremely well equipped for a Y7 and Y8 curriculum and we have specialist facilities for science and art. Some PE activities will take place on site but the majority will be either at Castle Mead or DMU. We are able to offer Music, Drama and Computing too. In year 9, we will be able to offer specialist design subjects which require workshops and our design team are working on the new build
Our temporary site consists of three blocks, which are fitted with modern high technology classrooms and fully equipped science laboratories, we also have a large art room and hall. Our playground is within the centre of the school and students enjoy playing basketball and table tennis during their free time. We also have a library, which students can access when they are in school.
We are fortunate to be part of the TMET group and therefore will be able to benefit from the use of Castle Mead’s brand new purpose built school site whilst we are in our temporary buildings for our sports activities.
Students will have their lunches seated in in our school hall, we offer a full range of healthy break time snacks and hot meals at lunchtime which are available to purchase for those who are not currently eligible for free school meals. Students are welcome to bring their own packed lunch if they wish.
Yes, they will. Whilst the permanent school is being built, our pupils will be able to access the high quality sports facilities at DeMontfort University’s Jubilee Sports Centre and the new sports facilities at Castle Mead Academy.
There are two possibilities for sport and PE provision. The first is to continue to use the fantastic sports facilities at DMU’s Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Leisure Centre as has been the case at Castle Mead. Also, there is a possibility that Brook Mead students will be able to use the sports facilities on the new Castle Mead permanent site.
Yes, we will have all the out of school teams as normal and will encourage a healthy competition between all the Mead schools in the city and others! We have employed additional PE staff to support these activities and accompany our students.
Pupils have a tutor who sees them every morning. It is not unusual for the tutor to stay with their group for the whole five years. Your tutor will get to know you and your family and support you throughout your educational journey. In a secondary school, pupils move to different specialist teaching areas to be taught by specialist teachers so you have different teachers for each lesson. For some subjects, pupils remain with their tutor group; for others, groups are composed of pupils drawn from different tutor groups. However, pupils usually meet up at break and lunchtimes with their friends from other groups.
No students are allowed to leave site in any of the Mead schools including Brook Mead.
From a mock timetable that has been designed, we know the numbers of teachers required in each subject. There will be some staff shared with Rushey Mead, Castle Mead and Orchard Mead academies to ensure high quality teaching of a rich curriculum. There will also be some staff who are based solely at Brook Mead. The Trust has plans mapped out for the next five years and the recruitment of high quality teaching staff is supported by the Teaching School and SCITT.
Our uniform is provided by Uniform Direct who have a shop in Leicester. Uniforms will also be available to order online due to current COVID restrictions. We will email parents and carers with details and updates in the next few weeks. Our supplier is very helpful and friendly and can give you guides to sizes.
No, pupils can choose to wear either the branded school skirt or grey trousers.
Children need to bring basic stationery with them each day. We will send out a list to parents in the summer. All books and other materials are provided by the school. Also, we provide a high level of IT with laptops available on site. Financial support can be provided; please contact us for further information. We will also be providing a drawstring Brook Mead Academy bag for learning resources and a water bottle for all our pupils.
We are lucky to have a well-stocked library at Brook Mead and reading is an integral part of our curriculum. We are also proud to have a specialist Librarian and Learning Resource and Development Manager working with us and Castle Mead who links in with the tutor to promote reading and is regularly in contact with students. Students will have one Reading for Pleasure lesson a week where they all read and enjoy the same book together. Students will also have one tutor time per week for personal reading of their own choice. We will celebrate events such as World Book Day and have author visits too. We will be a reading school with staff regularly showing what they are reading and recommending book to pupils. There will be an afterschool reading group too.
We are keen to take feedback on this, and it has formed part of our consultations. We would like to provide the buildings and facilities as a productive community resource. This is a dynamic project, our mission is that we are ‘Building Better Futures Together’ and in doing so we want to engage positively with our local community.
In terms of the day-to-day impact on the local community, considerations include ensuring that students will not be allowed offsite at any time during the school day. We are also considering a Travel Plan that will look at the best timings for the school day, linked into public transport and bus routes. The finish time of the school day is likely to be 3.40pm, so it is before the city rush-hour so as to ease any potential congestion.
We encourage as many students as possible to walk or ride their bike to school, as this offers a healthy start and end to the academic day.
For those who wish to ride their bike to school, we have plenty of bicycle racks within the academy grounds. Bicycles are left at students own risk and we strongly recommend that students lock up their bikes. Brook Mead Academy does not take any responsibility for any loss or damage.
Due to the central location of the school, we will not currently be providing private school buses, however the site is serviced by a numbered of public bus routes, time tables and journey planners can be viewed here:
– First Bus https://www.firstgroup.com/journey-planner/
– Arriva Buses https://www.arrivabus.co.uk/midlands/places/leicester/
– Centre Bus https://www.centrebus.info/bus-services/leicester-city/40/
Please use the following post codes when planning your journey:
– Temporary Site (Sept 21—Aug 23): LE3 5PT
– Permanent Site (Sept 2023 onwards): LE3 9EE
Your child could get free transport if they attend the nearest available school, and the walking distance from home is:
- More than two miles if they are under 8 years old, or;
- More than three miles if they are 8 – 16 years old
If your child is entitled to free school meals, or if you get the maximum level Working Tax Credit (this is where there is no reduction to Working Tax Credit due to your income), they could get free transport if they:
- attend the nearest available primary school and the walking distance from home is more than two miles, or;
- attend one of the three nearest available secondary schools and the walking distance from home is more than 2 and less than 6 miles or;
- attend the nearest available secondary school preferred on the grounds of religion or belief, and the walking distance from home is more than 2 and less than 15 miles.
Further information on school travel can be found on the Leicester City Councils web page here.
Please click here to apply for a free bus pass if you think you may be entitled to claim.
We encourage pupils to cycle and use pupil transport to avoid congestion during peak drop off and collection hours. However, we do have a very limited quick drop off area where parents can drop off and collect their child(ren).
The Trust is currently working with the Department for Education (DfE) to finalise the initial design for the School and produce a feasibility report.
There will be several opportunities for the local community to input into the process and take part in consultations regarding the development of the School.
This will be followed in 2021 by the pre-planning consultations/public meetings, these will be facilitated by appointed delivery Contractor and DfE. The outcomes of which will influence the final design and will form part of the Planning Application process.
Once the planning application is submitted Leicester City Council will undertake the statutory consultations required under the planning legislation.
The new primary school planned by the Local Authority was postponed due to a change in basic need for school places at that time not due to any cost factor. The current project to build Brook Mead Academy secondary school is in response to the urgent need for secondary places. Any remediation works necessary prior to occupation will be addressed professionally and are factored into the project plan and budget.
TMET originally bid for a secondary free school. When we were successful, the LA, having looked at their pupil forecasting, asked us to offer an all-through school which we were happy to support. Following further analysis of pupil places in the city, we have now been asked by the DfE and LA to offer a secondary only school.
This is in part because the proposed Learning without Limits Leicester Metropolitan secondary school, which was planned to be on Abbey Lane, is no longer opening.
Forecasting pupil numbers and place requirements can be very complex, analysing the impact of people moving in and out of the area and Brexit adding complexities. We have done all we can to be supportive and respond to what has been requested of us in this bid.
The LA school needs forecast is available in the presentation slides here.
The process for opening a school requires the Trust to publish an opening date around which the consultations take place. This is separate to the consultation process required for planning permission.
Planning permission will be sought for the development of the proposed site at Groby Road, along with permission to open the school on a temporary site currently being used by Castle Mead Academy.
Yes, a planning application will be submitted to Leicester City Council in the usual manner. This application will be subject to the statutory processes and public consultations.
We are completing an initial Section 10 consultation which aims to explore if the school should open in principle and whether the trust should enter into a funding agreement with the Secretary of State.
We also have open events planned which are specifically aimed at parents and families who are considering sending their children to Brook Mead Academy. Other events will be held for staff who are considering applying for jobs.
The Brook Mead Academy will go through a full planning application process which will require both informal pre application consultation with the local community and the formal planning consultations during the determination period,
The location of the school is based on demand for school places. The City Council is also looking at how we can keep more children who live in the city being educated within the city. Presently a large number of families are choosing to send their children to county schools such as in Oadby and Market Bosworth, and those schools are also becoming full.
Local city secondaries are full, and many have been operating in temporary accommodation to provide places. New housing in the Ashton Green area has created new need and Lionheart Academies Trust will be opening the other new secondary school there.
We will be holding a recruitment event in December which is likely to be shared with Castle Mead. Adverts will start to go out in January 21 and will be open to all Mead employees as well as people outside of the trust.
Our Special Educational Needs Coordinator would ensure that all teachers make the necessary adaptations to support children with mild hearing impairments. We would implement all the advice for each child give by the local hearing impairment team. We would also seek advice from the child’s year 6 teacher, the family and the child too about how best to support them. Adaptations may mean the student sitting near the teacher, away from windows or the teacher wearing a microphone. We have good experience of handling this issues.
We aim to bridge the learning gap between year 6 and 7 by finding out about the curriculum that the children have studied in their primary school and building upon it in year 7. Our schemes of work in year 7 are designed to build upon the KS2 curriculum. Prior learning is consolidated and then quickly built upon. We will publish our curriculum maps for year 7-9 shortly on our website.
A normal school dinner in a secondary school is set at £2.20. Of course, students can spend a varying amount depending what they choose form the wide array of healthy and home cooked food and snacks available on site.
We do also offer a breakfast club that starts at 730am.
We are a cashless school and a card is used to pay for food on site, we can assist you in topping up your child’s card.
If you require a free school meal please do contact us for further information.