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Academy21 first online alternative provision to receive new DFE accreditation

Provider of alternative provision (AP), Academy21, has today become the first online AP to be accredited under the UK Department for Education’s new Online Education Accreditation Scheme (OEAS). 

The scheme recognises the provider’s high standards of education and safeguarding arrangements for students. 

The Department for Education (DfE) introduced the accreditation scheme in response to the rapid growth of the online education services sector, as well as the growth of alternative provision, which marked an increase in the last academic year. The scheme aims to reassure children, caregivers, schools, and local authorities of the quality of education and safeguarding arrangements offered by accredited providers.   

Academy21 offers online education providing students with the unique experience of live instruction and adaptive teaching, which helps to develop relationships and build students’ confidence. The school’s Ofsted reports can now be accessed via the ‘Get Information about Schools’ (GIAS) website as an accredited provider.  

The DfE report highlights the ‘culture of high ambition and high expectations’ evident at Academy21 and lauds the school’s ‘driven focus to provide the best online provision possible for the pupils they serve’. 

In particular, the report notes that the positive learning environment and approaches taken by the school enable students to gain confidence, progress academically and, in many cases, successfully reintegrate back into their school or other educational placements.   

Alessandro Capozzi, executive head at Academy21, said: “We’re really proud to be the first online AP in the UK to receive this recognition from the Department for Education (DfE). 

“We’re committed to providing students with an exceptional education that caters to each individual child’s needs, and we welcome a scheme that recognises the vital role of quality online education in empowering students with additional needs or challenging circumstances.” 

The report notes:‘Teachers demonstrate strong subject knowledge alongside a secure understanding of the technical knowledge and skills needed to operate within an online environment. 

‘The positive learning environment they create promote pupils’ confidence and this has an important impact on the progress they go on to make.’

Geoff Barton, general secretary of the Association of School and College Leaders, said:“We are proud to have Academy 21 as a valued ASCL partner and are delighted that it has received a very positive report from Ofsted under the Online Education Accreditation Scheme. 

“This accreditation scheme is an important initiative in the growing field of online education services and provides vital assurance to children, parents and local authorities of the quality of education and safeguarding arrangements. 

“Academy 21 provides fantastic support to some of the education system’s most vulnerable students and its values closely align with ASCL’s mission to act on behalf of children and young people.” 

As approved providers on many local authority frameworks, Academy21 works in partnership with over 900 schools and over 140 Local Authorities to provide quality, innovative and inclusive fully live online education in a supportive environment that enables students with additional needs or challenging circumstances to reconnect with learning and move successfully onto the next phase in their education.   

For more information on the scheme, visit here

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