Sir Peter Hall School

Newsletter Edition 3

If for any reason you cannot view the document below or are using a mobile device, you can use use the ‘Download’ button below to access the file.

If for any reason you cannot view the document below or are using a mobile device, you can use use the ‘Download’ button below to access the file.

Founding pupils invited to make their mark!


Last week we had a fantastic meeting with Morgan Sindall, the building contractors, who not only took the time to show us around the new school but have also offered to support us with activities and tours in July. We would like to invite children accompanied by a parent / carer / school representative to meet us and to make a plaster memento as one of the founding pupils to attend Sir Peter Hall School. There will be four sessions in total and will need to be booked for health and safety reasons:

  • Wednesday 13th July at 10:00am or 1:30pm
  • Wednesday 20th July at 10:00am or 1:30pm 

If you have any questions or would like to reserve a place, please contact Carol Steed at csteed@sphschool.org

We are delighted to announce that we have been deemed ready to open by both the Local Authority and Ofsted. We had our pre-opening Ofsted inspection on Monday 13th June where we were judged against the Independent Schools’ Standards and found to be ready to open. This inspection is different to usual Ofsted inspections and we don’t get a grade, simply a judgment as to whether or not we meet standards for opening – and I am very pleased to report that we do.

If for any reason you cannot view the document below or are using a mobile device, you can use use the ‘Download’ button below to access the file.

If for any reason you cannot view the document below or are using a mobile device, you can use use the ‘Download’ button below to access the file.

A thank you from our headteacher, Catharine Wensley…


I would like to say a big thank you to everyone who has supported the Sir Peter Hall School journey towards our opening this September. It is was very exciting to see the windows being fitted when I visited the site last week and to meet the construction team who are doing an amazing job.

The local community have had to put up with road closures and building work on their doorstep and we are very grateful to them for their patience. We look forward to being very good neighbours once we open our doors.

We are proud to be members of Unity Schools Partnership – and this is not just a partnership in name. Sybil Andrews Academy and Abbots Green Primary Academy have hosted our staff interviews and helped us to recruit our founding team of staff.

So many great people have been interested in joining us to set up the new school – with an impressive range of skills and passion for educating young people with Social Emotional and Mental Health needs. I would like to thank everyone who has applied for roles and for the energy and enthusiasm shown during the recruitment process.

Thank you again to everyone for your help and support to date. We are looking forward to working together with you all, and our entire community, to provide an excellent education for our first intake of Sir Peter Hall stars.

For details on how to apply for a place at Sir Peter Hall School please visit our Admissions Page.


Photograph of Catharine Wensley and Jo Pettingale

Sir Peter Hall School has announced two new headteachers.

Catharine Wensley and Jo Pettingale will jointly lead the Sir Peter Hall School when it opens on Airfield Road, on the Moreton Hall estate.

The school will have an initial intake of 40 students, building to 80 students over the next three years, for children aged nine to 16 year olds.

In a joint statement, Ms Wensley and Ms Pettingale said: “We are delighted to be appointed the new headteachers of this much-needed bespoke special school for students with social emotional and mental health needs.

“Opening a new school is a huge honour and it is wonderful to see the Sir Peter Hall School coming to fruition. We look forward to welcoming children and their parents as they prepare to start here from September.”

The school recently hosted a recruitment evening and the new headteachers said the success was in keeping with the support they had received so far.

They said: “We are very pleased to be already working closely with our neighbouring primary and secondary schools.

“As symbolised by our logo of the caring hands and the book, we will provide academic subjects in line with the National Curriculum and a bespoke, nurturing environment to prepare our learners to lead fulfilling lives.

“We look forward to working with the community and making our contribution to the local area.”

The school, which will be opened by the Unity Schools Partnership, has been built by Suffolk County Council as part of their significant investment into increasing specialist education places across the county.

Tim Coulson, chief executive of the trust, said, “Catharine Wensley and Jo Pettingale bring many years of successful experience working as teachers and leaders in both mainstream primary, secondary and special schools and have already attracted much enthusiasm and interest as they appoint staff to the school.”

All stakeholders are warmly invited to attend our public consultation event, to meet us and find out more information.

Date and time:
6 October 2021
6pm-7.30pm

Location: 
Abbots Green Academy
Airfield Road
Bury St Edmunds
Suffolk
IP32 7PJ