Who We Are

A centre of excellence for inspiring successful futures

Stevenage ESC is a centre of excellence, committed to community educational provision that supports six local secondary schools, students and families. We have thirty-six full time places across KS3 and KS4 through a Service Level Agreement with Hertfordshire County Council. The provision supports KS3 students to their next steps and KS4 to employment, continued education or training. We offer a challenging, ambitious, broad and balanced curriculum that accounts for individual needs and pathways. All student’s barriers to education are identified and addressed with a detailed plan allowing them to reach their full potential. Underpinning our curriculum is an emphasis on high attendance and strong working partnership with our parents, carers, external providers and local community.

At SESC, we offer an aspirational, well sequenced curriculum to address social disadvantages by giving students the skills to take advantage of opportunities, responsibilities and experiences so that they can change their lives. The highest priority is placed on literacy. We know that a strong foundation in literacy is the building block for future success in learning. Our curriculum is based around our centre’s values; tolerance, teamwork, kindness, resilience, high aspirations and citizenship. 

The intent is for all learners to follow a personalised, adapted curriculum which is rooted in high aspirations and next steps. This is shared with all stakeholders on a regular basis. Students’ personal development provides life experiences that allows them to leave us with enhanced opportunities. We follow a detailed personal development and careers programme that provides opportunities for students to experience cultural awareness and knowledge. Students visit theatres and see a live performance, visit a stadium to watch a sporting event and a visit the seaside.

SESC bridges gaps in student’s knowledge and learning at both key stages and each student follows a personalised curriculum that provides a nurture and trauma informed approach, supporting students in gaining confidence, life learning and curriculum content embedded throughout.

A combination of GCSE and vocational subjects (BTEC, City & Guilds, WJEC) are offered alongside our personal development curriculum. This is provided through PHSCE, social development, weekly mentoring, emotional wellbeing and resilience, career advice and guidance, through group work, workshops and individual sessions. The intention is to equip students with the knowledge and cultural capital they need to succeed. We are both proactive and reactive to our local needs.

We believe that the curriculum operates beyond the classroom and school trips are an integral part of centre life. The transition support with North Herts College, Herts Regional College, schools, specialist provision and continued support beyond SESC, ensures the best possible opportunities for Y11 moving forward and for those moving to new schools.

Alongside high aspirations, the Centre’s nurtured approach is based around care and attention for students and their families. Building strong relationships with parents/carers has developed partnership work and sibling support networks with schools, to prevent further referrals. Our strength in providing links with external agencies, family work and partnership working has ensured vulnerable students and families were supported through the pandemic and are continued to be supported. 


I strongly believe since my son has started the ESC he has completely changed his behaviour and attitude, they have not only supported him but us as a family and I couldn’t ask for better staff they are all fantastic. Thank you.


Thank you for calling me earlier today to confirm that my son has been offered a place at the Stevenage College to learn plumbing. I have spoken to my son and his mother and we are all in agreement that he would like to accept this place please. I’m not sure if we will get to speak again but just in case we don’t, I just wanted to thank you and all of the staff at the ESC for all of your help with with my son’s education. To be honest, I wish he’d come to the ESC several years ago but I think when he eventually did, this was the best thing that could have happened for him. So please pass on my thanks to your colleagues. It really is much appreciated.

Parent of a Year 11 Student

A massive ty to you all. My son and I are reg in contact with your staff and his learning coach. He did some princes trust, cooking, reading and set up an online video message Yahtzee game yesterday with his nan. Your compassion for students is amazing.

Parent of a Year 10 Student

Lovely to meet you today when you were taking time to deliver the bags that had been made. These certainly help the staff when carrying their property around and some of our residents like them to keep their belongings in so I can assure you that they will be well received. We thank you for thinking of us and appreciate your generosity.

Monread Lodge Nursing and Residential Home, Knebworth

“It has been so nice having my old A back, thank you for looking after him”


"The support from you guys has been amazing, so thank you."

Barclay HOY

“Nan has said today a huge thank you for her mother's day present- she said it brought a tear to her eye and she was ever so grateful. She thought it was a brilliant idea and B took great pride in presenting it to her on Sunday”


“Just wanted to let you know J has gone into Barnwell quite excited for the new start. I really appreciate everything you all did for him, as without all the staff at the esc I don't think he'd be where he is right now. So thank you so much. I've attached a picture of J in his Barnwell uniform for you”


“No one really understands the work you do at your centre, thank you so much”


“This centre goes above and beyond for students”

Sash - Worker

“They were polite and courteous and were an absolute credit to the centre”


“I do very much appreciate everything the SESC has done for me and my family’


“When everyone thought we were failures you helped us to prove our worth and success”


“Stevenage ESC always strive to inspire their students and are amazing at tailoring their support to the individual. They always trailblaze within their careers programme and are not afraid in try new things and reflect to improve after each of their events and activities. "Their construction competition in partnership with Morgan Sindall and future plans to run competitions in other subject areas is a very innovative way to help their students develop their skills. "I love their holistic approach to their students building in mentoring time every week to help and support all of their students find their next best step”

Hertfordshire Careers Hub Operations Lead

“We greatly appreciate the educational care you give our most vulnerable children and young people and the speed with which you offer support when needed”

Virtual School

“Thank you very much for inviting us in to deliver our workshops to your Year 9, 10 and 11 students today. Our huge thanks also to all the teachers who assisted and participated and especially to all the students: we really appreciate their attention and involvement”

External PSHCE speakers

“I could not let this opportunity go by without saying how proud I was of the ESC group today. They blew me away.  They were focused very attentive, motivated enthusiastic, and they were well mannered & behaved! A big thank you to Laura & Gemma for the great support they give me always” 

College Tutor for our Vocational Programme

“Thank you for having us today and recently for the PSHE topics, we have enjoyed speaking with the students and have found the students to be so engaged and receptive”

External PSHCE speaker

“A note to say a huge thank you for such a warm welcome to the ESC today. It was such a valuable trip and I’m in awe of all that you and your team are doing for your pupils. The ethos was really positive and pupil focussed and you should be immensely proud of all you have achieved. Thank you for sharing it! Thanks to Anne-Marie for sharing all her expertise with us too, it was a joy to meet her”

The Diocese of Westminster Academy Trust