Ethos and Values

Outstanding Learning & Exceptional Achievement


Oxford Spires Academy ensures that every student is well-educated, has the opportunity to attend university, and is able to lead a happy and fulfilled life. Oxford Spires Academy is a friendly and positive Academy which values each individual. We are highly collaborative and ensure that no child is left behind. We build strong rapport, both as teams of teachers and with our students. Students develop a strong sense of belonging and strong sense of identity, cared for and challenged through our vibrant House System.


Our students make strong progress. We are about outstanding learning and exceptional achievement. Every decision is made with the question in mind ‘will this help the students to learn better and achieve more?’ We believe in a relentless focus to support each individual to be the best that they can be.


We are a centre for excellence for English and literacy and believe in developing each students’ strong personal voice and their confidence. We are clear that there are no excuses for underachievement. We aim to identify barriers that may be standing in the way of achievement, understand them in relation to our context and then focus on breaking them down, one by one. There are no excuses. We specialise in knowing our community and how best to support all our learners.


We instill in our students from the start a sense of integrity and confidence. Every adult in our community is a role model; every student is a role model and we all have the opportunity and responsibility to have a positive impact on the lives of others. We all ‘walk the walk’ and create a positive learning environment in all that we do. We give trust and respect at all times and ensure that students have fun and are happy in their learning. This ethos has established a success culture that we celebrate at every opportunity.


We want all of our students ‘to be the best that they can be’


Our Hard Work

We achieve greatness by working hard and progress to achieve the next step.


Our Integrity

We do the right thing because it is who we are and who we want to be.


Our Excellence

We will be better today than we were yesterday. We will be better tomorrow than we were today.

School Vision

The best version of ourselves

Our vision is to be a beacon of excellence at the heart of our local community. We believe that all students are capable of making outstanding progress and attaining the highest level, whatever their starting point. We do not make excuses for our students: we firmly believe that there are no barriers to achievement that cannot be overcome by a determined and resilient student and a supportive school team.

We believe in providing exceptional education for local children, our inspirational teaching and fantastic relationships provide and create a safe, supportive and challenging environment where students can flourish. We are relentless in our pursuit of the small things that we believe might have a big impact on our school culture, environment, ethos and our students’ attitude to learning, we set exemplary standards and aspirational goals. We believe in strong relationships, pride, community, family and support and every member of our staff is a role model to our young people.

We are extremely proud to be a multicultural, multi-faith community. We celebrate the diversity of our staff and student population and we encourage students to celebrate their own heritage but equally to be proud British citizens. The bedrock on which our school community is built is the excellent relationships between staff and students and between students themselves.

British Values

The Department for Education states that all schools have a duty to promote British Values to ensure young people leave school prepared for life in modern Britain. These involve ‘democracy’, the ‘rule of law’, ‘individual liberty’, mutual respect’, and ‘tolerance of those with different faiths and beliefs’.

At OSA we recognise not only the importance of allowing students to flourish academically but we also embrace our wider role in preparing them for their adult life beyond the formal examined curriculum. Part of our role in that preparation is ensuring that we promote and reinforce British Values to our students. British Values at OSA are embedded within our curriculum (please see curriculum booklets).

Other ways we celebrate the British Values can be seen below.

Democracy – a culture built upon freedom and equality, where everyone is aware of their rights and responsibilities

  • Student voice
  • Leadership opportunities
  • Student council
  • Safeguarding group
  • Influencing lessons by putting hand up to speak
  • Student elections – Head boy/Head girl
  • Making decisions together – Group work – agreeing on someone to feedback answers

Rule of Law – The need for rules to make a happy, safe and secure environment to be in.

  • Behaviour Policy / Code of conduct for staff – mirror society’s laws
  • Understanding rules and why they are important – assemblies and tutor times
  • Celebration of rewards
  • Close work with Safer Schools Police Officer / visits from Fire Brigade
  • Assemblies with a focus on the law – consent/upskirting
  • School Health Nurse interventions
  • Assemblies and productions around CSE and CDE

Tolerance – recognising and understanding that we don’t all share the same beliefs and values.
Respecting the values, ideas and beliefs of others whilst not imposing our own values

  • Creating an environment where discussions about sensitive issues will be controlled and structured
  • Recognise that it is unacceptable to dismiss the beliefs and opinions of anyone
  • Texts in the library to reflect a variety of cultures and countries
  • Christmas lunches / Eid
  • On-site prayer room
  • Cowley Carnival participation
  • Celebration of culture through House Events – Dance and Drama

Individual Liberty – Protection of your rights and the right of others you work with

  • Opportunities for students to develop confidence and self-esteem through tutor time activities
  • Strong anti-bullying culture
  • Understanding of E-Safety through tutor times and PSHE
  • Wide range of extra-curricular activities to choose from
  • Teaching of growth mindset principles (Mental Health Lead and Mental Health First Aider in school)


  • The core of our school ethos and modelled by students and staff alike
  • Competitive situations through the House system
  • Everyone is entitled to their opinion as long as it does not promote extremism
  • Everyone is entitled to a voice within the classroom
  • Students are taught to listen to others as they would like to be listened to
  • BeKindOSA campaign